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Friday Jul 06 2018

Shehbaz terms Avenfield verdict a 'dark chapter in history'


LAHORE: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) president Shehbaz Sharif has termed an accountability court decision to send his brother, former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, to jail as unjust and "a dark chapter in history".

The former Punjab chief minister was speaking to reporters in Lahore on Friday shortly after accountability court judge Mohammad Bashir announced the verdict handing Nawaz Sharif a 11-year prison term and an £8 million fine in the Avenfield properties reference. The court also gave Sharif's daughter Maryam an eight-year prison sentence and a £2 million fine, rendering her disqualified to contest the 2018 general elections in Pakistan.

"The Pakistani nation and the PML-N reject this decision. This is a dark chapter in the history of this country. There was no solid legal evidence in the entire case. This was an unfair decision," said Shehbaz Sharif.

He said that voters will make their decision on July 25th. “We will adopt all legal options available for justice," he said.

He recounted incidents when NAB dismissed a case against another political figure on the grounds that original documents were not available. He accentuated that in Nawaz Sharif's case, however, the decision has been announced against him even though "there was not even a single document of evidence proving Nawaz Sharif's ownership, or without even his name being in Panama [papers]."

He lamented that his brother's wife Begum Kulsoom Nawaz was extremely ill but there was absolutely no regard given even to her. He added that the public's court and God's court were bigger and he, along with PML-N, would be taking their case to those courts.