ISLAMABAD - The British High Commission Friday said that although there was no extradition treaty between Pakistan and the United Kingdom yet such requests could still be made.

Commenting on former finance minister Ishaq Dar’s possible extradition, a spokesperson of the British High Commission in Islamabad said: “The UK and Pakistan have a productive relationship on justice and accountability. Although we have no extradition treaty with Pakistan, extradition requests can be legally made.” The spokesperson added: “It (this rule) is not person specific.”

Earlier reports said the British government had rejected a petition to extradite Ishaq Dar, citing the reason that it had no formal extradition treaty with Pakistan.

The British authorities said that the UK had no formal extradition treaty with Pakistan but Section 194 of the extradition Act 2003 did allow special extradition arrangements in exceptional circumstances.

Under current law, an extradition process is initiated at the request of the government of the country in which the individual had been convicted of the crime so the Pakistani government’s can initiate such proceedings. This week, the Supreme Court had directed the authorities concerned to continue to take measures for the repatriation of Ishaq Dar. The Pakistani government cancelled the diplomatic passports of Ishaq Dar and his wife Tabassum Ishaq, to pave the way for his return.

The authorities said Ishaq Dar – a close relative of Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) supremo Nawaz Sharif – had to surrender the document after his term as the cabinet member in November last year and his passports had been cancelled as he failed to comply.

Dar was recently declared an absconder in a graft case linking to the Panama Papers scandal. The Supreme Court had initiated proceedings for extradition of Dar, who flew out of the country after a court began hearings against him in a graft case filed in line with the apex court’s July 2017 Panama Papers verdict, ousting Nawaz Sharif as the Prime Minister.

There were reports Dar had filed an application seeking asylum in the United Kingdom citing issues in Pakistan and health condition. The PML-N did not confirm the development.

Under the law, Dar was bound to surrender his and wife Tabassum Ishaq’s diplomatic passports within 30 days of ceasing office as the federal finance minister – by December 22, 2017.

In May 2018, the Supreme Court had ordered the Election Commission of Pakistan to suspend the notification of Senator-elect Dar as member of the Senate for his failure to appear before the court.

In June 2018, the ECP suspended the Senate membership of Dar. On July 10, the Supreme Court ordered Dar to appear before court within three days. Interpol Red Notice for Dar was issued by the government of Pakistan on July 14 to bring him back to Pakistan.

In August 2018, the National Accountability Bureau approved an inquiry into a graft case against Dar for illegally awarding a Next Generation Mobile Services contract and for committing alleged financial irregularities.

Dar and Nawaz Sharif’s sons Hussain Nawaz and Hassan Nawaz offered the funeral prayers of Kulsoom Nawaz in London and opted not to return to Pakistan fearing arrest. The second funeral of Kulsoom Nawaz was held at Sharif Medical City, Raiwind near Lahore yesterday before she was laid to rest. Kulsoom Nawaz, the wife of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif had passed away at London’s Harley Street Clinic this week after a prolonged battle with cancer. The Punjab government has released Nawaz Sharif, Maryam Nawaz and Mohammed Safdar on parole to participate in the last rites of Kulsoom Nawaz. The trio will remain free on parole until September 17.