NOWSHERA: The Difa-e-Pakistan Council (DPC) remarked on Tuesday that Pakistan should not “commit the mistake” of handing Dr Shakil Afridi over to the US, and should give him “nothing less than a death sentence”, reported Express News on Tuesday.
This was stated by DPC leaders, including Maulana Samiul Haq, Hafiz Hussain Ahmed and Jamat-i-Islami (JI) chief Syed Munawar Hussain, during a press conference in Nowshera.
The leaders maintained that Dr Afridi had committed treason and should not be spared for it.
Dr Afridi ran a fake vaccination programme designed to collect information about the presence of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad by running DNA tests on samples surreptitiously collected from his family. Bin Laden was subsequently shot dead in a US raid in May 2011. Dr Afridi was sentenced to 33 years in prison by a tribal court on charges of treason, for collaborating with militants.
After his sentencing, a furious Senate Appropriations Committee voted to cut US aid to Pakistan by a symbolic $33 million – $1 million for each year of jail time. Another legislation was introduced in the US Senate on Tuesday demanding a cut in all aid to Pakistan unless Dr Afridi is released and allowed to leave the country.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has termed the sentence “unjust and unwarranted”, saying Dr Afridi was “instrumental in taking down one of the world’s most-wanted murderers”.
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