Lahore High Court says only govt entitled to take action in Aafia case

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Lahore, Feb.9 (ANI) : The Lahore High Court (LHC) has directed the Foreign Ministry to consult the Law Ministry and take necessary action for safe and early release of Dr Aafia Siddiqui, who was recently indicted by a US court on terrorism charges.

Hearing a petition filed by one Javed Jaffri, the LHC asked the concerned department to take necessary actions in this regard.

Barrister Jaffri, in his petition had urged the court to ask the government to pursue Aafia's case with more intent.

Jaffri's petition said that the trial judge hearing Aafia's case was a Jew, and therefore one could not expect justice from a 'biased person.'

The court, however, dismissed the petition, saying the issue was not under the jurisdiction of law, and it is the government which has to take action.

The Pakistani neuroscientist, who has been charged for firing at American investigators in Afghanistan in July 2008, is scheduled to be sentenced on May 6.

Last week, a New York court found Aafia guilty on charges related to the attempted murder and assault of US nationals and US officers and employees in Afghanistan.

Aafia's unknown whereabouts between 2003 and 2008 have been the subject of much debate among human rights organisations and US government officials.

The US government claims that she was linked to Al Qaeda, while human rights organisations maintains that Aafia was detained and tortured in US-backed secret prisons. (ANI)

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