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Waseem Abbasi
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
From Print Edition
 
 

 

ISLAMABAD: The Swiss government has communicated to Pakistan that the graft cases against President Asif Ali Zardari and others cannot be reopened in the Swiss courts despite a recent letter by the PPP’s former government.

 

However, Pakistan’s law ministry has decided to re-examine all the relevant material to chalk out the future course of action in this regard.Talking to The News, Minister for Law Zahid Hamid said that the Swiss government had informed through a letter that the cases had died down forever as they were time barred. The letter containing the Swiss government’s response to a PPP government’s letter was opened by the minister on Tuesday.

 

Last year, on the directions of the Supreme Court of Pakistan, the PPP government had written a letter to the Swiss authorities for the withdrawal of an earlier letter of Attorney General, which requested the closure of cases against Zardari.

 

According to law minister, three major points have been raised by the Swiss authorities in their fresh letter in support of their stance not to re-open the cases against Zardari. Firstly, the cases have died down for lapse of time. Secondly, the government had failed to submit any new evidence related to these cases. And thirdly, the previous government’s stance regarding the cases had been self-contradictory.

 

Later, the Ministry of Law issued a press release stating that the ministry would collect all the relevant material again and evaluate it to decide the future course of action regarding the Swiss cases.

 

Recently, the Pakistan mission in Switzerland was approached by the caretaker government to get the host government’s response over the letter written to the Swiss authorities by the PPP government.

 

The Pakistani mission approached the Swiss government and got its response. The PPP law minister Farooq H Naek had claimed that the Swiss authorities had dropped the cases according to their own laws and not in accordance with immunity under the Pakistani laws.