According to Christianity Today, the panel of three judges ruled that Bibi was “wrongly” accused by her two sisters with the help of a local cleric, based on “material contradictions and inconsistent statements of the witnesses” that “cast a shadow of doubt on the prosecution’s version of facts.”
“Furthermore, the alleged extra-judicial confession was not voluntary but rather resulted out of coercion and undue pressure as the appellant was forcibly brought before the complainant in presence of a gathering, who were threatening to kill her; as such, it cannot be made the basis of a conviction,” the judges wrote. “Therefore, the appellant being innocent deserves acquittal."
Her case, until now, had seemed hopeless as court after court upheld her death sentence.
“Blasphemy is a serious offense,” wrote justice Asif Saeed Khosa, “but the insult of the appellant’s religion and religious sensibilities by the complainant party and then mixing truth with falsehood in the name of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) was also not short of being blasphemous."
Bibi’s husband Ashiq Masih and their children, currently in London, are anxiously awaiting her safe release after eight years of wrongful detention.