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AAFIA MOVEMENT

Pakistan asks US to repatriate neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui

It is the 40th birthday of Dr Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani neuroscientist, known as a “Daughter of the Nation”.

Her birthday anniversary is a grim reminder of her verdict given by a New York court, which in 2010 sentenced her on charges of attempted murder of American soldiers during her detention in an Afghan prison in 2008.

The continued protests for her support, has increase anti-American sentiments in Pakistan. The fresh wave of protests has once again compelled the reluctant government to write a formal letter to Washington, requesting her repatriation.

Observers here say, the so-called war on terror is hugely dependent on Pakistan’s cooperation and this gives the government a lot of leverage to toughly negotiate with Washington on repatriating Dr Aafia to home. Nonetheless, the track record of the government suggests that Islamabad is unlikely to go beyond paying a lip service to the public demand to secure her release from the US custody.

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