May 6 – 7 Rallies and Vigils
7 May, 2010
May 6th and 7th Rallies and Vigils in Support of Dr. Aafia
The residents of the federal capital participated in large numbers in a protest rally at Aabpara Chowk here on Thursday to press the US government for release of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui. The rally, organised by the Jamiat Ittehad Ulema, was led Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) (Pakistan) Naib Ameer Dr. Muhammad Kamal. It was participated by people belonging to different of walks of life.
The protesters carried banners and placards inscribed with slogans for the release of the Pakistani scientist who is detained in the US. They chanted slogans against former president Pervez Musharraf who they said handed over Dr. Aafia Siddiqui and many other Pakistanis to the US to receive dollars from the American government.
The ‘Justice for Aafia Coalition – JFAC’ has held vigil outside the US Embassy in Central London ahead of her sentencing in New York on charges of attempted murder of US personnel while imprisoned at Bagram detention facility in Afghanistan. The London vigil was arranged by the UK chapter of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf.
Ms Zia said that Party Chairman Imran Khan has led a very active campaign for Dr Aafia and has demanded that the Pakistani authorities tell them the circumstances of Dr Aafia ending up in Afghanistan with her three children. She said the Government needs to expose those who have aided and abetted the kidnapping of Dr Aafia.
There were also supportive statements from Green Party leader and member European Parliament Caroline Lucas and from leading solicitor and human rights activist Gareth Peirce.
Members of a divese group of communities, on May 6th staged a demonstration in front the U.S. District Court building demanding reform of the American judicial system. The rally was organized by The Peace Thru Justice Foundation and several other endorsing organizations.
A large crowd of people raised slogans against the "bias" against minorities that they said runs through the judicial set-up.
May 6th. was the day that the court was scheduled to hold a sentencing hearing for Dr. Aafia Siddiqui, but the sentenceing date has now been postponed till August 16.