US asked to allow Aafia’s mother, sister to meet her

WASHINGTON: The Pakistani embassy in Washington has asked the US State Department to facilitate a meeting between detained Pakistani neuroscientist Dr Aafia Siddiqui and members of her family including mother and sister, it was officially learned on Monday.

The embassy conveyed the request to the US authorities on the instructions of Pakistan’s Ambassador Husain Haqqani following Aafia’s desire to see her mother Ismat Siddiqui and sister Dr Fauzia Siddiqui.

Aafia, 36, is currently undergoing psychiatric evaluation at a medical facility in Fort Worth, Texas, which is inside a military compound. The tests were ordered by a US judge after he entered a plea of innocence last month on behalf of Aafia’s prosecutors.

She was shot in the abdomen after she allegedly grabbed an American soldier’s gun during questioning in Afghanistan in July. She was brought to New York on August 4 to face charges of attempted murder and assault.

Information
According to an embassy official, Pakistan has also asked the US to immediately share any information regarding the whereabouts of Aafia’s daughter Miriam and son Suleman, if they have any knowledge about them. One of Aafia’s sons was brought to Pakistan from Afghanistan last month. Aafia’s brother Mohammad Ali Siddiqui, a resident of Houston, was allowed to meet her on Sunday.

Last week, a five-member Pakistani parliamentary delegation led by Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed had a long meeting with her and afterwards called for her immediate release and repatriation to Pakistan as no terrorism charges had been brought against her.

The Pakistani embassy has been seeking her repatriation to Pakistan and urging the US authorities to provide her medical treatment.

APP

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