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Dr Shakil Afridi awarded unilateral sentence: brother

Dr Shakil Afridi awarded unilateral sentence: brother

PESHAWAR: Dr Shakil Afridi was awarded unilateral sentence by the Political Agent, his brother Jamil Afridi and lawyer said here today.

Samiullah Afridi, general secretary of the Peace Movement, a civil society group against militancy, said Dr Shakil has done nothing illegal.

The actual reason behind the verdict could only be known once we are provided with a copy, he said.

Jamil Afridi said his brother and family had US visas and they could have fled from the country if he had committed any crime. The family is still in Pakistan, he added.

Dr Shakil Afridi's brother said they are not allowed to meet him and they have not been allowed to give him access to legal councils.

"We have requested the administration to provide us with the documents related to the trial and conviction, and once we get them, we will file an appeal in the office of the commissioner of the Frontier Crimes Regulation," the lawyer said.

The tribal authorities jailed Shakil Afridi for 33 years for agreeing to try and collect DNA for US intelligence in their bid to locate bin Laden.

Afridi's jailing has exasperated the US, where the Senate Appropriations Committee has voted to cut US aid to Pakistan by a symbolic $33 million - $1 million for each year of jail time.

AFP adds: Jamil Afridi called on the Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry to intervene directly to allow a swift appeal.

"I appeal on the chief justice to provide us security and help us exercise our right of appeal," Jamil Afridi, Shakeel's elder brother, told a news conference.

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