US human rights group terms Dr. Aafia's sentence "unfair and unjust"

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Islamabad, Sept 25 (ANI): A New York-based human rights group has condemned as "unfair and unjust" the 86-year prison sentence handed down to Dr Aafia Siddiqui, saying she had never caused harm to anyone.

The International Justice Network, attorneys for the Siddiqui family, reportedly said in a statement after Thursday's tough sentence imposed by US District Judge Richard Berman, that the sentence is not only unjust because of its harshness to Aafia, but also because of its impact it will have on her two children in Pakistan who may never see their mother again.

"But the greatest injustice of all is that those who are responsible for the kidnapping, disappearance, and abuse of Aafia and her children without cause have yet to answer for their actions," The Daily Times quoted the International Justice Network, as saying.

"The International Justice Network stands in solidarity with the international community in condemning this unfair and unjust result in her case," it added.

A federal court in Manhattan on Thursday had sentenced Dr. Siddiqui to 86 years imprisonment for the attempted murder of US officers in Afghanistan.

In a four-hour sentencing session, Judge Berman repeatedly termed her acts premeditated. In spite of being urged by her defence lawyers to lessen her sentence to 12 years on the basis that she had been mentally ill, Berman rejected that argument and said he increased the sentence because of several factors, including terrorist intent and motivation to commit a hate crime. (ANI)

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