The lawyer representing a Christian woman acquitted of blasphemy after eight years on death row has fled Pakistan in fear for his life.
Saif Mulook told news agency AFP he had to leave so he could continue to represent Asia Bibi, whose conviction was overturned by judges on Wednesday.
Officials have since agreed to bar Bibi from leaving Pakistan in order to end violent protests over the ruling.
Campaigners blasted the deal as equivalent to signing her “death warrant”.
Mulook said he had decided to leave as it was “not possible” to continue living in Pakistan, adding: “I need to stay alive as I still have to fight the legal battle for Asia Bibi.”
He told Pakistan’s Express Tribune he would return to the country to defend his client but needed the government to provide security.
Asia Bibi was convicted in 2010 of insulting the Prophet Muhammad during a row with neighbours, and many are calling for the reinstatement of the death penalty following her acquittal.