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Raising voice for Aafia global obligation of rights activists

Karachi: (Report by Zeshan Hussain) Raising voice for ending detention of H Dr Aafia Siddiqui is moral responsibility for human rights activists and peace loving people of whole world, said representatives of different civil society organizations, address a press conference in Washington DC, organized by Council on American Islamic Relation (CAIR).

Addressing on the occasion, CAIR-Dallas executive director Faizan Syed said the purpose of holding this press conference in related to Advocacy Day is tell the members of Congress that the voters of their constituency are demanding immediate release of Dr Aafia Siddiqui. He said Aafia is in jail for 86 years for a crime she did not commit. He said like hundreds of other innocent men and women, Dr Aafia was kidnapped during the so-called war on terror and she was detained with the funding of the US government.

Attorney representing Dr Aafia family in America, Marva Elibiali said the purpose of today’s press conference is to make aware the congress members about injust jailing of Aafia Siddiqui, adding that Dr Aafia herself is the victim of the war on terror. During the hearing of the case against Aafia the allegation of terrorism was never levelled against her. Though, the media had wrongly dubbed het as Lady Al-Qaida but the prosecution never levelled allegations of terrorism against her. “When I met her in the FMC Caswel jail, her physical condition was worrisome, which showed that she was not being properly kept in the jail and it is necessary to send her back to her country to save her life.

Marva asked from March 30, 2003 to July 18, 2008 she remaining missing, and the question is where she was kept during this time. It is demanded from the governments of USA and Pakistan to take actions for immediate release of Dr Aafia Siddiqui. Nahels Morales speaking on the occasion said the only available video of Dr Aafia on Internet is in which she is wearing a yellow dress. “We have started a movement IAmAfia# with yellow clothes, shirt, cap and scarf so that to make aware the world about the issue of Dr Aafia Siddiqui.

CAIR-SFBA senior government relations coordinator Samina Usman said Aafia is the victim of a great injustice and she is in detention for last two decades and to raise voice for her release is our moral obligation. She said we demand from our congressmen to take steps for her release.

CAIR-MI executive director Dawood Walid said the only way to redress the wounds of Aafia is to release her immediately. He said release of Aafia and repatriating her to Pakistan would be a step i right direction.

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