Witnesses’ accounts differ at Dr. Aafia’s trial –>DAWN

Source : http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/14-witnesses-accounts-differ-at-dr-aafia-trial-zj-01

KARACHI: The trial of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui has taken a bizarre turn when a witness’s testimony came out to be different from the one given by American official Captain Schnieder, reports DawnNews.

Furthermore, an FBI agent testified that they did not find Dr. Aafia’s finger-prints on the rifle.

The US federal court in Manhattan heard Aafia Siddiqui and 5 other witnesses. Dr. Aafia told the court that she is being misrepresented by the prosecutor’s statement regarding the things she has said about America, that only negative thoughts are being portrayed.

According to DawnNews’ correspondent in New York, Masood Haider, the court heard witnesses who saw the incident including an Afghan interpreter, Ahmed Gul who became a green card holder in 2009 and was processed by the American government and now lives in New York. Abdul previously claimed that he saw Dr. Aafia shoot at the US soldiers.

There was also a cross examination of witnesses and forensic experts and FBI. On the second day of the trial, four witnesses came under cross-questioning.

In the previous hearing, Captain Schnieder told the court that Dr. Aafia shot at him while she was on her knees.

But on the second day of the trial, Ahmed Gul told the court that Dr. Aafia was standing when she fired the gun and the gun was pointing at some other official.

The Afghan interpreter also told the court that he has been granted a green card and has been settled in America by the officials who brought him to testify in the trial.

During the hearing, one FBI official told the court that they found Dr. Aafia’s fingerprints on the documents but not on the gun, Masood Haider said.

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Detailed Judgment Issued Over NRO

NRO Detailed Judgment has been issued by Supreme Court of Pakistan. Previously on 16 December 2009, SC 17 member bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhary issued a short order which nullified the draconian law.

The 287 detailed judgment is written by CJP Ifikhar Chaudhary.

The judgment can be downloaded from:

http://www.supremecourt.gov.pk/web/user_files/File/NROJudgment.pdf

For once we need to go for across the board accountability without becoming a prey of illusions created by the players of National Security Card, Democracy Card, Shaheed Card, Ethnic Card, Sectarian or any other Card.

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SC issues detailed Judgment in NRO case

Source: http://www.app.com.pk/en_/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=94497&Itemid=2

ISLAMABAD, Jan 19 (APP): Supreme Court of Pakistan on Tuesday issued a detailed judgement in National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) case.The Supreme Court issued detailed judgment in Constitution Petitions numbers 76 to 80 of 2007, Constitution Petition 59 of 2009 (on appeal from the order dated 15-01-2009 passed by High Court of Sindh at Karachi in Constitution Petition No. 355 of 2008) and HRC Nos.
14328-P to 14331-P and 15082-P of 2009 regarding the NRO.
The petitions were heard by 17-Member Larger Bench headed by Mr. Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Chief Justice of Pakistan and consisting of other Judges namely Mr. Justice Javed Iqbal, Mr.  Justice Sardar Muhammad Raza Khan, Mr. Justice Khalil-ur-Rehman Ramday, Mr. Justice Mian Shakirullah Jan, Mr. Justice Tassadduq Hussain Jillani, Mr. Justice Nasir-ul-Mulk, Mr. Justice Raja Fayyaz Ahmed, Mr. Justice Ch. Ijaz Ahmed, Mr. Justice Muhammad Sair Ali, Mr. Justice Mahmood Akhtar Shahid Siddiqui, Mr. Justice S. Khawaja, Mr. Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali, Mr. Justice Khilji Arif Hussain, Mr.Justice Rahmat Husain Jafferi, Mr. Justice Tariq Parvez and Mr. Justice Ghulam Rabbani.
The Judgment has been authored by the Mr. Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Chief Justice of Pakistan. The judgment was circulated to all Judges of the Bench, signed by Mr. Justice Khalil-ur-Rehman Ramday on 12-01-2010.
It has been signed by all remaining Judges of the Bench.  The judgment has unanimously been signed by all the Judges and having signed detailed judgment the three Judges namely Mr. Justice Sardar Muhammad Raza Khan, Mr. Justice Ch. Ijaz Ahmed and Mr. Justice Jawwad S. Khwaja have also added supporting notes.

Human Rights, Missing Persons And The Elected Government

Justice Javed Iqbal in his statement few days ago rightly pointed out to the fact that cases like missing persons pose real threat to democracy not the verdicts of Independent judiciary.  In his statements he further criticized the performance of the government institutions. He said no government institution is working properly and the system is on the verge of disaster. He further said someone had to intervene to save the system and huge cry was raised every time when court does it.

The issue of missing persons is considered as the main reason behind the attempted removal of CJP Iftikhar Chaudhary twice by Musharraf’s government. According to HRCP estimates there are 198 reported missing persons since 2007 out of which 66 are from the deprived province of Baluchistan. The estimated figure of unreported cases is much higher. In a talk show recently Asma Jehangir, Chairperson of  HRCP told that in 2009 there were 30 new cases of missing persons came to their knowledge.

After the 18th February 2008 elections it was expected that the newly elected government would try to improve the human rights situation and give some relief to the victim families. But this proved to be another shattered dream of people blinded by their faith and hope which soon turned into disbelief on the system for many.

Not only that all the people missing are not recovered but this heinous crime of illegally abducting the people is going on and hurdles are being created to trace the already missing. In a recent television interview Dr. Fawzia Siddiqi , sister of Dr. Aafia Siddiqi said the real danger from the release of Dr. Aafia is felt by those who are part of this evil network which kidnaps people and sell them. It is amazing that in the time of elected government with new army chief and intelligence chiefs no actions were taken against those involved in these illegal and inhuman activities during the former dictators rule. Government is using delaying tactics in Dr. Aafia case and has showed it’s inability to take the case in International Court of Justice.

In war hit areas of NWFP the situation is probably worse than other areas as there is no free media access and also judicial authority is almost none in many areas due to military control. Not only young but old and aged are being picked up by the security institutions in the name of war against terror. In a case filed by Syed Iqbal Kazmi, representative in Pakistan of Human Right Commission South Asia (HRCSA), an eighty years old man Wazir was picked up by Mohmand Rifles on September 2, 2009.Mohmand Rifles personnel picked up Wazir alleging that his son was involved in terrorist activities. In another case police and intelligence agencies in a joint raid picked up Usman Ali on January 29, 2009 from his house on suspicion of having relations with Taliban. Baluchistan is also facing similar situation though 20 of missing persons were released on political pressure  But still there are many including people like Pasand Khan Mandai from Baluchistan Worker’s Party were picked up by agencies during 2009 and their cases are still pending.

The statement by Justice Javed Iqbal clearly reflects the growing sentiments in Pakistani Society about the current democracy. Justice Javed Iqball said,” What type of democracy do we have wherein fundamental rights of the people could not be ensured?” The remarks were given while he was heading a three-member bench of the apex court, hearing petitions of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) and others.

It seems that current so called democratic government has completely failed to protect the rights of our people. The situation demands real seriousness and sincerity, it is already too late. People are already fed up with inflation, corruption, load shedding and same old deceptions and lies. Government needs to take some real measures to rectify it’s mistakes and the mistakes committed during the time of the former dictator Musharraf otherwise things will go to the point of no return.

Imran warns of protests if Aafia convicted–>The Nation

Source :http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Politics/10-Jan-2010/Imran-warns-of-protests-if-Aafia-convicted

By Khalid Aziz

ISLAMABAD – Chairman Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf Imran Khan Saturday warned of countrywide protest against the prospective conviction of Dr Aafia Siddiqui in USA.
Khan while addressing a students’ seminar said that the US court was going to deliver an ex-party sentence against Dr Afia who was not pleading her case for having no hope of justice from American courts. PTI’s Women Wing had organised the seminar at party’s central office.
He regretted that our own agencies handed over a daughter of nation to foreign powers for the sake of dollars, adding that rulers were keeping mum over her possible conviction. He, however, warned that PTI workers would come on streets in each and every corner of the country if Dr Aafia were convicted by US court.
Recalling his youth days before the students, PTI chief said by then Pakistan was a fast progressing country and the nation was proud and confident. Later, it became slave of foreign powers due to the misdeeds of its rulers. He said that rulers were worshipping the dollar, who, he said, had sold out the nation for minting dollars from USA.
He said that PPP should ask Zardari to explain from which source or business he earned the millions of dollars kept in foreign banks.
Khan also condemned military operations in FATA and other parts of the country and called for withdrawal from the foreign war. He said operations were not a solution to the problem but produced more militants and suicide bombers. Once again he offered mediation between the Taliban and government with guaranteed success provided Pakistan withdrew from the so-called war on terror.

He also denounced US drones’ attacks inside Pakistani territory, saying that 42 drone attacks carried out during the last year killed only eight terrorists and 708 innocent Pakistanis. PTI Chief said people were not paying taxes due to lack of trust in government, adding that rulers were spending taxpayers’ money on their lavish foreign trips having no benefit for the country. “Zardari is once again out on begging trip,” he said.
Responding to a question regarding government response to his earlier mediation offer, Khan said that rulers had not yet obtained NOC from USA. He asked why government was not establishing its writ in Karachi and why judicial inquiry of the May 12, 2007 carnage in Karachi was not being carried out.
Imran Khan also regretted that at times when rest of the world was asking US for withdrawing its forces from Afghanistan, Pakistan Foreign Minister was requesting them for staying in Afghanistan for at least five more years. He said government was shedding the blood of its own people for the sake of dollars.

We need to go for across the board accountability without becoming a prey of illusions

After the remarkable of 17 member honorable bench of Supreme Court of Pakistan. Some players of democracy card join by some opportunists are playing Democracy Card and Ethnic Card.

NRO case was in pending before emergency SC just gave a ruling on that . Most of the criticism is based on speculation and this is being done either deliberately or due to ignorance of the facts.

Some points to think for people who are due to ignorance falling into this propaganda:

-Yes,Musharraf needs to be trialed but who is going to invoke article 6. SC has provided solid grounds for that in 31st July 2009 judgment.

-SC has now called for the list of loan-settlements beneficiaries from banks and it will involve all.

-Karachi and Lahore land mafia cases are being opened.

-Recently Karachi City Government’s acres of land is taken back from Army control by SC.

-PPP has a great chance to bring the khakis to justice as well if they come out of the deals they have made.

-Missing persons case is reopened including Dr. Aafia case and the delay is being done by agencies and so called democratic government.

-Bugti case has been registered and in the courts.

And their numerous other good things which are happening .

Establishment is playing games and they will not stop this but it doesn’t mean we start falling into their trap.

Only thing which will stop them for another MERAI AZIZ HAM WATNON or something similar (which is being planned) is a strong judiciary and a good way to keep judiciary out the equation is to destroy its reputation.

Weaknesses are there and if any one has a problem with any judgment then why don’t they challenge it in the court or at least they should have defended it properly in the court if the whole drama is for NRO .

The criticism over creating a team of judges to supervise accountability cases is baseless as their are examples of similar for terrorism cases but no one criticize that. It’s the job of superior judiciary to see what is happening in lower courts. Another thing it will do is to ensure the proper trial without any delays like it has been the practice which was also criticized by many.

The other thing which is being propagated is why only Swiss cases are opened?

This is not the true picture Swiss cases were especially mentioned because it involves international courts otherwise the judgment says to open all the cases.

We need to slowly move towards a system of social-economic justice without losing our track.

These plutocrats (not democrats) are playing democracy card and ethnic card like khakis play national security card.

For once we need to go for across the board accountability without becoming a prey of illusions created by the players of National Security Card, Democracy Card, Shaheed Card, Ethnic Card, Sectarian or any other Card.

Sanih e Mashriqi Pakistan–>Dr. AQ Khan on 1971 in Jang

Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan has written a must read thought provoking article on 1971 Independence of Bangladesh.

The Best Thing Army Can Do

Many people are of the opinion that army under Kiyani is different than army under Musharraf. I have doubts and disagreements over this statement.

If Kiyani is somewhat different then he needs to come out of that filthy NRO-Musharraf Protection-War against humanity deal.

According to which:
1) PPP and liberal alliance got NRO.
2) Pervaiz Musharraf got protection from article 6 proceedings.

America and Army (Kiyani represented the army) were the brokers of the deal.

The main thing which made this deal possible was the commitment of both army and PPP to fight this war against humanity and peace.

Pak Army/ISI are not fighting against USA and allied forces , they are giving them safe passage for their 95% supplies for Afghanistan(An impression is being given by establishment that operations in tribal areas are not against our tribes but are against CIA backed groups). They are giving protection to their assets in Shamsi, Tarbaila Ghazi etc .Missing persons case is still running and still the facts are not presented to courts by army/agencies.

I can say the change in their behavior is coming when:

1) They decide to come out of this war.
2) Take their support to US and allies forces back.
3) Kiyani invokes army act 1952 against Musharraf for treason.
4) Army decides to leave their forceful control over Pakistan’s economic resources especially land.
5) Generals stop building their image and focus on national security and not on ways of capturing powers and political influence.

Our Quaid had a great visionary mind and we can still learn from what he said:

“I am persuaded to say this because during my talks with one or two very high-ranking officers I discovered that they did not know the implications of the Oath taken by the troops of Pakistan. Of course, an oath is only a matter of form; what are more important are the true spirit and the heart.” – Jinnah at Staff College Quetta 14th June 1948

And what oath they take currently:
[Article 244]

“(In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.)
I, ____________, do solemnly swear that I will bear true faith and allegiance to Pakistan and uphold the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan which embodies the will of the people, that I will not engage myself in any political activities whatsoever and that I will honestly and faithfully serve Pakistan in the Pakistan Army (or Navy or Air Force) as required by and under the law.”

If an unlawful command is given then constitution says not to obey it and in the oath our soldiers swear in the name of Allah to uphold the constitution.

The best thing army can do is to become a national army and stop acting like an occupied force which serves the motives of imperialist powers.