Dr Aafia’s detention

Dr Aafia’s detention
aafia-siddiquiTHE anger that one feels at the arbitrary arrest of Dr Aafia get further intensified as she completes seven years of detention. And thoughts inevitably turn to the fate of her three children, 9-year old Maryam and two young sons who went missing with her. Their abduction, for which her sister Dr Fouzia points a finger at the US, is condemnable to say the least.

This is not simply the height of moral degradation; it shows a ruthless feature of the war on terror, a fiendish plot that has dragged the little kids into it. At first, the US authorities confirmed that one of her sons was in their custody but later they retracted. However, the family is of the firm belief that they are being held captives either by the FBI or some intelligence agency in Pakistan. Dr Fouzia’s revelation before the media that she had been threatened by the intelligence agents with dire consequences if she raised her voice on the issue of their release shows that they are held by these very men harassing her. The intelligence agents working under the Musharraf regime colluded with the US, picked up Dr Aafia and her children; they must be quizzed. The Interior Ministry, ordered by the Supreme Court to look into the case of the missing persons, must now leave no stone unturned in securing the release of Dr Aafia and her children.
The government must understand that the general feeling of outrage in Pakistan at the US for making a monster out of Dr Aafia is beginning to turn into a popular movement. The US courts, though failed to find evidence against her, did not set her free. It was, indeed, impossible for a frail woman to overpower a group of commandoes; rather they took the FBI version as gospel truth. Several civil society groups and political parties have announced protest rallies for the recovery of Dr Aafia, her children as well as the missing persons in Pakistan. The government needs to act firmly for at stake is its credibility as a people-friendly set-up.

Source: TheNation.com.pk


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