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October 25, 2020

Pakistan seeks ‘deportation’ of Nawaz exploring new grounds


October 25, 2020

LONDON: The Home Office has received a letter from the Pakistan government seeking “deportation” of Nawaz Sharif, the former prime minister of Pakistan, to serve his remaining jail term after breaking an agreement with the Pakistan government that he will return in eight weeks after receiving essential treatment.

A source in the British government confirmed that a letter from the Pakistan government has been received and it remains with the UK Central Authority Unit at the Home Office.

The letter from Pakistan was received around two weeks ago and it has not been dealt with as yet.

The letter has been marked for the attention of Home Secretary Priti Patel.

A spokesman of the Home Office refused to comment on the status of the letter when approached by The News and Geo but a source in the government shared that the Pakistan government has written at least four letters so far seeking return of Nawaz Sharif in the last one year, since Nawaz Sharif’s arrival here on medical grounds after the government of PM Imran Khan permitted him to travel to London for his urgent medical treatment.

It's understood that in previous letters, the government of Pakistan sought extradition of Nawaz and specifically asked the British government for extradition of the

former premier but in the latest letter, the Pakistan government has asked the UK govt for “deportation” of Nawaz, exploring new avenues on the grounds that Nawaz has been convicted and violated an agreement with the government.

The latest letter says Home Secretary Priti Patel is “duty bound” to deport Nawaz because he was temporarily released from prison in Pakistan and given permission to leave Pakistan for eight weeks only.

According to a source in the Pakistan government, contents of the letter were seen and approved by PM Imran Khan after Shahzad Akbar, PM Khan’s special assistant on Accountability and Interior, prepared it urging the British government to go for “deportation” of the ex-premier who has become fully active in Pakistani politics for the last six weeks from his office just off Edgware Road. The letter informs Priti Patel, the Conservative MP and Home Secretary, that Nawaz has been “responsible for pillaging the state”. Shahzad Akbar adds in the letter: “I trust that you will be supportive of our efforts to bring those responsible for corruption to account.”

The next month of November will mark exactly one year when Nawaz Sharif arrived here for treatment of his various heart conditions.

He doesn’t have his full-time private doctor with him anymore but a private local doctor sees him every second day and Nawaz Sharif has secured a contract with a private clinic which offers round-the-clock medical emergency medical services on short notices.

The Islamabad High Court had recently refused Nawaz’s extension for stay in the UK, stating that he had failed to get admitted to hospital and failed to give adequate medical evidence that he was getting treatment.

Shahzad Akbar has asked Priti Patel to use her “extensive powers” to deport Nawaz as she is “duty bound” to do so. The letter informs the home secretary that criminals sentenced to four years or more in Britain must be refused leave to remain in the UK and on this ground he must be deported. The letter informs the home secretary that the Islamabad High Court has issued a warrant for Nawaz Sharif’s arrest.

Shahzad Akbar has separately stated that the PTI government is working with British authorities to finalise modalities for Nawaz's return.

Shahzad Akbar, speaking to Hamid Mir on Geo News programme "Capital Talk", said: "It will be my aim to bring him back even sooner" after Fawad Chaudhry claimed that Nawaz will be sent back to Pakistan by the UK government in the middle of January 2021.

Akbar quipped: “There is a flight of deportees coming back soon and we would want to save money and have him come on the same flight.”

Nawaz denies all accusations and charges of corruption. He has said his government was removed according to a conspiracy and judge Arshed Malik confirmed on record that he was blackmailed into convicting the former premier.