Fox News says Nawaz held private meeting during which, he committed to tasking his top law officials with reviewing prosecution process for Dr Afridi
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has assured the US authorities that his government will reconsider the case of Dr Shakil Afridi, the doctor who helped the CIA pinpoint Osama Bin Laden, a US new channel reported on Monday.
Fox News reported that Nawaz held a private meeting with congressional representatives and a non-government individual during a closed-door official House of Representatives event in Washington.
During the meeting, he committed to tasking his top law officials with reviewing the prosecution process for Dr Afridi.
Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs Rep Ed Royce, R-Calif, together with Robert Lorsch of the Free Afridi Campaign heavily pressured the Pakistani leadership about releasing the doctor and allowing him a life in the United States.
“My message to them was: What they do with Dr Afridi is how Pakistan will be judged as a democracy by the rest of the world, ” Lorsch told Fox News in an interview.
The tight-knit gathering, which included Adviser to the Prime Minister on National Security Sartaj Aziz and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, had not been previously announced to the somewhat surprised Pakistani delegation. The meeting lasted around 25 minutes in a side-room immediately prior to dinner hosted by the House Committee on Foreign Affairs on last Tuesday night.
“This was first time that the leadership in Pakistan realised the importance of Dr Afridi not as a political bargaining tool but as a symbol of how freedom-loving American people regard Pakistan,” Lorsch said.
Rep Royce raised the question of a prime ministerial pardon or amnesty for Afridi, who has appealed to the American public to help secure his freedom.
But the prime minister pointed out that the doctor was awaiting a retrial after his conviction was overturned on a technicality and he couldn’t pardon him unless he was reconvicted.
Afridi, who was arrested immediately after the May 2, 2011 operation by US commandos that killed Osama, was convicted for treason over alleged ties to militant group Lashkar-e-Islam.
Meanwhile, the doctor has sought a fresh probe into his conviction in the treason case and a tribunal in federally administered tribal areas will hear arguments from his legal counsel on October 30 to determine whether the case merits fresh probe.
Dr. Afridi did a big favor to Pakistan . Otherwise Osama would have killed many more pakistanis. He supported all the terrorist activities going on in pakistan today. Osama killed all who are not like him. He was a terrorist.
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