KARACHI: Human rights activists worldwide demand end to illegal detention of the human rights icon, Dr Aafia Siddiqui and a dignified return of the daughter of the nation should be the priority for those fighting against terror and lawlessness, said Aafia Movement Convener Dr Fowzia Siddiqui.
She was addressing a protest demo in front of Karachi Press Club (KPC) here Sunday on the occasion of the international day for enforced disappearance. She said no words can describe the pain induced by enforced disappearances. She said Dr Aafia and her little children were victims of this inhuman act. She urged that Dr Aafia’s dignified return should be the priority for all those fighting against terror and lawlessness.
Dr Fowzia said today enforced disappearance is used as a tool in the so-called ‘war on terror’. She said the case of Dr Aafia Siddiqui is a textbook example of enforced disappearance in Pakistan. She said when law enforcement agencies abduct or kidnap a citizen whom they have sworn to protect with no charges and then refuse to acknowledge their whereabouts this arrest is termed enforced disappearance.
She said the United Nations general assembly on 21st December 2010 declared this a barbaric act and since 2011, the day of 30th August is being celebrated as the international day for enforced disappearance.
She praised the human rights activists and Aafia Movement workers who arranged a caravan for dignity (Karwan e Ghairat) from Orangi Town and the KPC to participate in the protest demo.
Dr Fowzia stated that enforced disappearance is a cruel crime and a barbaric act, because when the establishment cannot protect its own citizens within the laws of the nation and holds double standards of law enforcement the “writ of state” is uprooted. The very core of independence is destabilized, and humanity ridiculed.
She said the doctrine of justice says let ten guilty go to save a single innocent but here hundreds of innocents are being tortured, abducted, disappeared and the guilty roam freely.
She said Dr Aafia’s disappearance along with her little children is a glaring example of this brutality. She was abducted from a street of Karachi in 2003 along with a 6-month baby, 3-year daughter and 5 year son and tortured for several years. Later, she surfaced as a barely alive dead body and charged for so-called attempt to murder. She said till now it is 12 years, but there is no sign of justice for Aafia and her children. She said Amina Masood Janjua’s pleas for her husband, hundreds of other missing persons, Mama Baloch’s campaign for the missing people, all have fallen on deaf ears.
Aafia Movement leader appealed since the national and international law experts have acknowledged Dr Aafia’s innocence, the concerned in Pakistan and the United States of America should end this suffering. She said now that a wave of claims to bring justice and supremacy of law in the country is raised resurfacing of the missing persons and Aafia’s release should be the top-most priority, as she is the daughter of the nation. Her release would be the single most positive step in establishing an end to double standards of law enforcement.”
Earlier, a large number of participants of Caravan for Dignity, marching from Orangi Town reached the KPC. Holding banners, placards and portraits of Aafia Siddiqui they raised slogans for her release. A large number of women and civil society members were also present.