TO abduct a five-year old girl and subject her to torture and the most inhuman treatment, just because her mother is accused of a certain crime, is heinous child abuse, a violation of international law; it reeks of a most ignoble form of vengeance, and constitutes an affront to human decency. Thats what has been, for seven long years, the fate for Maryam Siddiqui, the daughter of Dr Aafia Siddiqui, who was left outside the house of Dr Fauzia, Dr Aafias sister, by unidentified persons at Karachi a couple of days back. Maryam was indoctrinated by her captives to call herself Fatima but the DNA test leaves little room for doubt that she was, indeed, Dr Aafia-Dr Amjad Khans daughter. Kept in a dark room in solitary confinement, she is unable to stand the broad daylight. Once the public outcry against her disappearance has seen her release, even the most nave can see that the girl, now 12, stands traumatised. Heading the criminal band of perpetrators was the superpower US, the indefatigable champion of human rights: two other governments, Pakistan and Afghanistan, whom the official moralists at Washington never tire of blaming for human rights violations, were complicit in the crime. Nothing could be more hypocritical and shameful. Rather than adopting all available means to get the custody of Dr Aafia and her children, even resorting to cutting off the supply line of US and NATO forces, as urged by Senator Talha Mahmood, Chairman Standing Committee on Interior, the Pakistan government chose to cooperate with the US Administration in this blatant act of outrage. Pakistans complicity is also evident from the childs removal from Pakistan to Afghanistan way back in 2003 and now her sudden reappearance in Karachi. Neither of the acts could have been committed without the clear knowledge and cooperation of our intelligence agencies. Afghanistans dirty role comes out not only in the fact that she was kept at Bagram airbase, but also from President Karzais admission, while he was last at Islamabad, that the children were in his country. No less chilling is the story of Dr Aafia herself. Her agony is not merely the ordeal, physical as well as moral, she is going through but the suffering, unknown to her, that her minor missing children might have had to bear. One of them, a son, was released last year, but another, also a son, still continues to be missing. Prime Minister Gilani, at present in Washington, is supposed to be meeting President Obama. He must strongly demand their immediate release before Dr Aafia is awarded any punishment.