Free Dr Aafia Siddiqui demonstration outside Pakistan Consulate in Manchester, England
(Image via Yvonne Ridley)
The family of Dr Aafia Siddiqui have released a press statement demanding an update and clarification on her state of health after rumours circulated alleging she may have died. This is causing great distress to relatives including her sister Dr Fowzia Siddiqui who has been unable to verify whether she is alive or deceased.
Siddiqui, who gained a PhD in neuroscience at Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts, US, was convicted for the attempted murder of American agents in Afghanistan and sentenced to 86 years in prison. The Aafia Movement who set up a campaign for her release claimed in 2015,
“Dr Aafia Siddiqui was kidnapped 12 years ago from Karachi on her way to Karachi airport with her minor children. She was trafficked outside the country and after keeping her in illegal detention for five years, her arrest was shown in a faked attack on American soldiers in Afghanistan at Bagram base. “
Siddiqui was last known to be held in Fort Worth prison in the US. Her case was viewed as controversial based on what the Aafia Movement describe as “weak and flimsy” evidence with allegations of physical and mental torture and that she was “dishonored” see following article,
“Aafia awareness 2015, major campaign push to bring Aafia Siddiqui home”
Photo posted on Twitter by Aafia Movement
Press statement from Aafia Movement
Aafia Movement seeks to determine what is happening with Aafia and demands action from Pakistan and US governments as follows:-
Letter of inquiry sent by Aafia’s family
A young girl passes out papers about Aafia Siddiqui, an MIT alumna currently serving an 86-year sentence in Forth Worth, Texas, during a rally Siddiqui’s release held Tuesday on the steps outside of 77 Mass Ave.
On March 10th 2016, Tech Online reported that a group of student protesters from MIT took to the steps outside of 77 Massachusetts Avenue calling on the U.S. government to release and repatriate Siddiqui, see following link,
“Protesters seek release of Aafia Siddiqui”
A further US rally in support of Siddiqui is scheduled for March 30th, 2016 at 4pm Fort Worth Texas near the Carswell Medical Center.
Aafia Movement website
Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights/WOT and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad. She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.