London Police not responding to Pakistan’s request for consular access to Altaf Hussain

Published: June 4, 2014
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A supporter of Pakistan's Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM) political party, holds a poster of Altaf Hussain as he chants slogans along with others to show solidarity with their leader in Karachi June 4, 2014 June 4, 2014. PHOTO: REUTERS

A supporter of Pakistan's Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM) political party, holds a poster of Altaf Hussain as he chants slogans along with others to show solidarity with their leader in Karachi June 4, 2014 June 4, 2014. PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s high commission in London has informed the Prime Minister’s office in Islamabad that British authorities have not yet responded to their request for the consular access to Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain.

“London Police is interrogating Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain and has not responded to their request for the consular access to the person in custody. The official told that nobody, even his daughter Afza Altaf is permitted to see him,” said high commission.

The interior ministry’s officials told The Express Tribune, “Altaf Hussain is in custody of London police, not arrested according to the British law, if the police indicts him after the interview for which he has been picked up from his residence, then he’ll be declared arrested and only then we can meet him.”

Pakistan’s High Commission in London on Monday contacted British Foreign Ministry and asked for access to Hussain who is currently under the custody of London police over money laundering charges.

“Following instruction from the prime minister, we have requested the British government to provide consular access to Altaf Hussain,” foreign ministry spokesperson Tasnim Aslam said Wednesday.

She said the request was forwarded through Pakistan’s High Commission in London. However, Tasnim said British authorities had not yet responded to Pakistan’s request.

A British high Commission’s official due to fresh advisory issued by the British government regarding no media contact on Altaf Hussain’s case, told on condition of anonymity that Altaf Hussain has been arrested on strong grounds not merely upon suspicion as he was under the radar of British authorities who were secretly monitoring his activities for the past few weeks.

“Hussain will be indicted soon as his responses being submitted to the interrogators have not been deemed as satisfactory so far,” the official said.

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