Dr Aafia; Daughter of Pakistan left at the mercy of circumstances

Country has entered in to very crucial phase as the political arena representing total chaotic scenario, IDPs remained confined to their camps, seeking more help, thousands of villages, major cities lay submerged with floodwaters that left thousands people drowned. There are also very important issues that seem to be put on back burner by the government as well as those politicians who made promised to resolve either voted to power or else. During PPP’s tenure, Federal Minister for Interior Rehman Malik assured Dr Fauzia (sister of Dr Aafia) that his government would do whatever it takes for the release of Dr Aafia. Later, it was matter of great shock when the US administration in its briefing to media revealed that no such request has been made by the then government.

Same promises were made by Imran Khan and other politicians. Even the PML-N before coming to power assured that the issue has been raised with the US government. After voted to power, the sister of ill-fated Dr Aafia called on PM and Interior Minister Ch Nisar and requested them to help Dr Aafia get released from US prison. Dr Fauzia reportedly was assured by the both leaders that they are in contact with some of the ‘friends’ in Obama administration and matter will be resolved. Interior Minister, Ch Nisar took the matter seriously and started a process in the very context. The PL-N government made request to US for the repatriation of Dr Aafia arguing that she should be allowed to complete here sentence in Pakistan. The US administration and Pakistani officials met more than once to seek legal ways. But ironically the process was stalled reasons best known to the concerned quarters.

Dr Aafia no doubt is a daughter of Pakistan. She has been sentenced to 86-years by the US court on the charges of terrorism. She was arrested from Karachi by the US commandos on the information of her husband and taken to US without fulfilling the legal requirements laid in Pakistan’s Justice System. Languishing in jail for over three years, she was convicted by a jury consists of US citizens on the charged of shooting US commandos and FBI agents though none of them received any bullet injuries but Dr Aafia. She was accused of having links with Qaeeda but investigator failed to prove it. She was not even allowed to speak for herself to bring fore the facts before the jury.

Though the US lawyers who fought her case and the human rights activists termed her sentence totally unjustified on legal grounds and filed an appeal in the court of law but to no avail. The US media also strongly criticized over the sentence but their voices fall on the deaf ears.

Now after getting disappointed by the circumstances, Dr Aafia is reportedly trying to abandon her legal fight for freedom, saying “I refuse to participate in this system of total injustice that has punished and tortured me repeatedly, and continues to do so, without my having committed a crime,” she wrote.

Dr Aafia said she wanted to be sent home to Pakistan through diplomacy, not through the legal system. According to her the US court system is unjust.

But the dilemma is that what happened to the talks between US and Pakistan in which both countries were supposed to enter into agreement of ’Prisoner Swap’. The hope was very much there once the pact is signed; the PML-N government would be able to bring the daughter of Pakistan back to country. But the stalled process has raised many questions for those Pakistanis who want to see Dr Aafia back. Had the government succeeded in brining her back under ‘prisoner swap’ pact, it would have been a great achievement for incumbent government. But now it appeared that government has changed its priorities thus leaving the very issue unsolved. It is also matter of shame for other politicians too for not raising voices for ill-fated Dr Aafia. Each and every successive government on many times were in a position to get US convinced to secure her release but ironically none of the rulers in the past or present pressurize the President George W Bush junior or President Obama for the very purpose. Instead our rulers kept ‘Doing More’ on the pressure exerted by the US government. The US has caused huge damages to Pakistan’s interest be it releasing collation support fund, supporting to steer the country out of economical crunch or provision of much needed equipments, technology what to say about abuse of human rights. Pakistan being a frontline state in global war on terror launched by US and its allies lost thousands of troops, civilians but the US and its allies only appreciated the sacrifice verbally and did nothing significant that might feel proud our ‘leaders’ to justify their ‘ sympathies’ with the US. Those sitting on the helm of affairs must understand that US is and never be a friend of Pakistan as precisely told the Hillary Clinton that we are friends to those countries where US interests are fulfilled.






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