Senate passes resolution on Dr Aafia's release -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

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Senate passes resolution on Dr Aafia’s release

ISLAMABAD: The Senate on Monday unanimously passed a resolution expressing concern over the sentence given to Dr Aafia Siddiqui in the United States, and demanded the government take all political and diplomatic measures to secure the Pakistani scientist’s release.

Senator Muhammad Talha Mahmood moved the resolution in the House.

With the consent of the House, the Chair amended the wording of the resolution, which was announced by Senator Nayyer Bukhari, Leader of the House, as “the House expresses great concern over Dr Aafia’s case and demands the government take all political and diplomatic measures for her release”.

Law Minister Senator Babar Awan declared Dr Aafia’s case “conflict” of law. “It is violation of international law as three points are not clear like the origin of arrest, abduction from Pakistan and circumstances which always go in the favour of Dr Aafia,” he said.

He said the government took several measures for the immediate release of Dr Aafia and President Asif Ali Zardari had also spoken to the US authorities regarding her release.

Senator Prof Khursheed Ahmed suggested that a joint resolution should be framed by both houses of parliament to build pressure for Dr Aafia’s release.

ANP walkout: Meanwhile, the Awami National Party (ANP) staged a walkout during the proceedings of the points of order session.

“The government did not give us due representation in the Core Committee, comprising the PPP and the MQM, constituted to maintain law and order in Sindh,” Senator Ilyas Bilour said as he announced that his party would walk out of the session in protest.

Senator Seemi Sadique expressed dissatisfaction over the government’s agreements with the International Monetary Fund. “We should not be dependent on the IMF,” she said during the discussion on inflation.

She hinted at possible water terrorism in the region, and that Pakistan should move the International Court of Justice to resolve the water crisis with India under the Indus Basin Treaty.

The Chair also referred two bills, The State Bank of Pakistan (Amendment) Bill, 2010 (Omission of section 8A) and The SBP Banking Service Corporation Ordinance (Repeal) Bill, 2010 to committee concerned for further discussion. Senator Raza Rabbani introduced both bills in the Upper House. The chairman adjourned the session until today (Tuesday) 10:30am.
Source: Daily Times
Date:2/23/2010