LAHORE–The Lahore High Court on Monday ordered the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) to confirm the nationality of all 32 Pakistani detainees in Bagram to the United States.

Justice Muhammad Khalid Mahmood Khan was hearing a civil miscellaneous application filed by Justice Project Pakistan (JPP) in its already pending petition seeking repatriation of seven Pakistanis detained at Bagram Jail of Afghanistan. JPP counsel Barrister Sara Bilal told the court that without express confirmation by the MFA, there could be no real progress in the repatriation of the 32 Pakistani detainees.

“After years of indefinite detention, the very least the Pakistani government can do for these detainees is to recognize them as their own. Once again, we see the judiciary as being the sole guardian of the fundamental rights of our citizens,” Br Sara contended.

Agreeing with argument Justice Khan directed the MFA to submit reply till May 30.

An already pending petition pointed out seven abductees included Awal Khan, Hamidullah Khan, Abdul Haleem Saifullah, Fazal Karim, Amal Khan, Iftikhar Ahmadand Younas Rehmatullah.

The petitioner had requested the court for directions to the ministries to make arrangements the detainees’ repatriation.