UK Govt. failed to act as Pak police tortured Brit nationals in Pakistan

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London, Sep.9 (ANI): Internal British Foreign Office e-mails have revealed that officials failed to act on claims by two British men that they had been tortured by Pakistani Police in Pakistan and were forced to confess to murder.

According to a Sky News report, which accessed the e-mails, Rehan Zaman and Naheem Hussain had informed the British Government about being tortured in Mirpur, Pakistan, but the officials took months to follow-up on the claims.

The e-mails were accessed under the Freedom of Information Act, contradicts claims by the Foreign Office earlier this year that officials had 'actively sought' to raise the allegations with Pakistani authorities.

Hussain and Zaman, from Birmingham, were both in their late teens when they were arrested in Ratta, Pakistan, five years ago. They are still awaiting trial on death row in Mirpur Prison.

Following the murder of two local men on June 22, 2004, Zaman and Hussain were arrested and taken to Dadyal police station. They were held there for two weeks, during which time they claim they were subjected to continual torture in an effort to extract confessions.

The pair spoke to a Sky News reporting team, as they attended their latest visit to court.

Hussain repeated the central allegation: "I've been tortured," he said. "They told me, if I didn't give them 11,000 pounds they'd nail me to a tree and beat me up. They put cigarette marks on me."

He went on to criticise British Prime Minister Gordon Brown for not doing enough to help.

Zaman said the police "pulled our nails out, stripped us naked and put us in a room where we were tortured."

A Foreign Office spokesman has acknowledged the delay was unacceptable.

The Foreign Office has confirmed that new guidance has been issued to consular staff and since 2005 all overseas consular officials have had to undertake a new compulsory training course.

The spokesman said the British government was continuing to raise the concerns of Hussain and Zaman with the Pakistani authorities. (ANI)

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