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Court clears Pakistani Christian girl accused in blasphemy case

Farooq Naeem / AFP - Getty Images, file

Pakistani security personnel shift Rimsha Masih (L), a Christian girl accused of blasphemy, to a helicopter after her release from jail in Rawalpindi on September 8, 2012. Masih was arrested on August 16 for allegedly burning pages containing verses from the Quran but she was released from a prison in Rawalpindi after a court accepted her bail application.

A Pakistani Christian girl who was accused of burning pages of Muslim holy texts has been cleared of blasphemy charges against her.

Pakistan’s Islamabad High Court ordered a police report against Rimsha Masih discharged on Tuesday.

Rimsha, who is believed to be 14, was arrested earlier this year on charges of blasphemy for allegedly burning Muslim holy texts.

Later, police officials said she may have been framed by the cleric who accused her of the crime. He was later arrested.

In Muslim Pakistan, the mere allegation of an offense to Islam can mean death. Those accused under an anti-blasphemy law are sometimes lynched by the public even if they are found innocent by the courts.

Rimsha was held in a garrison near Islamabad for nearly three weeks before she was freed after a judge granted her bail, the Associated Press reported. A reporter on the scene said she was taken from the prison in an armored vehicle and whisked away by helicopter. Her face was covered to protect her identity.

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