Friday Jul 19 2019
Web Desk

Dr Aafia Siddiqui's mother writes open letter to PM Imran Khan

Web Desk
File photo from 2010 shows Ismat Siddiqui, the mother of Dr Aafia Siddiqui, watching a news report following the court verdict against her daughter.—AFP/file photo

ISLAMABAD: The mother of Dr Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani neuroscientist jailed in the US for almost a decade, has written an open letter to Prime Minister Imran Khan urging him to help free her daughter from US captivity.

A US court sentenced Dr Aafia Siddiqui to 86 years in prison in early 2010 on charges of attempted murder and assault stemming from an incident with US authorities in Afghanistan—charges she denied. She has since been languishing in a US jail.

The open letter from Ismat Siddiqui, Dr Aafia's mother, comes days before Prime Minister Imran Khan is scheduled to visit the US and meet with President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington.

"Surely, I do not need to remind you of how I am suffering, as the unjust captivity of the daughter of Pakistan is indeed as near and dear to your heart as mine. With due respect and a sad heart filled with new hope, I humbly request you to please help save my daughter Dr Aafia, whose name is now synonymous with the dignity and honor of Pakistan," writes grieving and ailing mother in the letter, addressing the Pakistani prime minister as "my dear son".

"Your visit to US and meeting with President Trump is a new ray of hope for Pakistanis and myself that you will not only demand the release of your sister Aafia but do so with a resolve only true leaders can," she wrote.

"My Son Imran Khan, need I remind you of our phone conversations? You are a ray of hope in this bleak time of uncertainty. My son, I am sure you agree that bringing Aafia back home is a singularly most important issue that not only raises the status of every Pakistani, it shows the world that when it comes to our honor and our daughters, we are no longer daughter sellers. Now Imran Khan is here to show we are a Nation of principle and dignity!"

"India will rise to highest levels for a terrorist just because he is theirs, America will take back Killers like Raymond Davis, why should we not stand for our innocent daughter? Aafia killed no one, She stands for love and peace, and regards you a great hero.

"Please, all I ask just allow a dying mother embrace her daughter and children reunite to pick up the pieces and have some closure.

"My health is ailing and I am becoming weaker as the days have turned into years, but I keep hope in Allah and the Quran, that a savior like you will rise, for Allah has bestowed on you the power to resolve this issue. Please bring back my daughter as a dying mothers mercy plea. Have the courage in your heart to take a firm stance. Insha'Allah Pakistan will rise victorious and dignified. May the guidance of Allah be with you."