The former United States Attorney General, William Ramsey Clark and Federal Minister Farooq Sattar calling Aafia Siddiqui’s imprisonment in the United States of America a tragedy said that the government of Pakistan ought to take some action in order to release her from the US detention.

William Ramsey Clark also termed the trial of Dr Aafia in the US illegal and unjustified as she is a mother and a daughter for which justice demands that she should immediately be released. “Pakistan should intensify its efforts in this issue”, he suggested. Farooq Sattar said that it was always possible that if Pakistan authorities wrote a letter, US government might consider freeing Dr Aafia. He urged the president, prime minister and foreign minister to write a letter for her immediate release.

Despite the fact that Aafia Siddique has been jailed in the US for years, we have not heard any ‘out of the box demand’ from any of our elected or non-elected leaders; all we see is lips service on particular instances like these. Farooq Sattar who is urging and demanding government to raise the issue must open his eyes and understand that he himself is part of the government. Whenever the MQM people face a political hitch, they go to the president to confer with him about the issues. We wonder what is stopping him and his party to get the president’s assistance on this specific issue. Simply commenting on the issue would not solve the issue neither Dr Aafia will come back. If the MQM is determined on their stance of justice and human rights for Dr Aafia they have to take a principled stand.

SYED HASSAM AHMED,

Karachi, August 29.