Pakistani lawyer Shahzad Akbar has been invited to speak at an International Drone Summit in Washington on April 28, however, the US authorities have not provided him with a visa, said a press release by Center for Constitutional Rights.
Akbar was invited to speak at the summit as he had been providing legal aid to the victims of drone strikes in Pakistan and was the first one to file a case on behalf of the family members of civilian victims of drone strikes. He is also the co-founder of a human rights organisation called Foundation for Fundamental Rights.
According to the press release, Akbar has travelled to the US several times in the past, but has not been allowed to visit the country since he started speaking against the US drone strikes.
“Denying a visa to people like me is denying Americans their right to know what the US government and its intelligence community are doing to children, women and other civilians in this part of the world,” Akbar said.
The organisers of the event CODEPINK, have also expressed displeasure over the US government’s decision to not allow Akbar to speak at the forum terming it as “outrageous”.
Earlier, a report found out that at least 194 people were killed in the 10 of the deadliest drone strikes in tribal areas. Of these, at least 70 per cent, 138 deaths, were of militants. The rest, 56 deaths, were of either civilians or tribal police.
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