Pak Affairs Politics

Nawaz flown to Jeddah after arrest at airport

ISLAMABAD: Former Prime Minister and PML (N) Chief Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif was flown to Jeddah shortly after his arrest at Islamabad Airport on his return to the country, officials said. He was taken into “protective custody” and subsequently flown to Saudi Arabia in a special airplane, they added said. Armed security personnel entered the Pakistan International Airlines PIA jet on which he was travelling after Mr Sharif refused to hand over his passport to immigration officials on the plane. He was eventually allowed to disembark but was later detained inside the airport building, they said.

In a brief chat with media inside the plane, Mian Nawaz Sharif said that the high handedness and aggressive steps of the government show that it has not learnt a lesson from the past. He said General Musharraf was repeating the mistakes of former dictators in the country. “Such mistakes have proven disastrous for former military regimes,” he said and added the rulers have used all tactics to bar his return to the country for restoration of democracy. He said blocking roads and bridges with containers failed to dint the resolve of his party workers and the hurdles created by government in his smooth and unhindered return violates the order of the Supreme Court of Pakistan.

The apex court on August 23 has given a verdict allowing the Sharif brothers to return the country and take part in the political process. “The Sharifs can return to Pakistan unhindered,” Justice Chaudhry said in his judgment. “They had an inalienable right to return and remain in the country as citizens of Pakistan,” the court ordered. “Their safe return will not be restricted or hampered by the federal governments or provincial governments or any other agencies in any manner,” it added.

An official said that the government has honoured the Supreme Court verdict in letter and spirit by allowing Nawaz Sharif to land in the country and coming out of his plane. But as he has violated an agreement regarding his exile for ten years so he was sent to Saudi Arabia under the agreement for another three years after which he will have the liberty to return the country and take part in the political process.

According to sources the former prime minister was told that he could be allowed to leave the plane if he was prepared for house arrest. Sharif said he was ready for arrest if allowed to exit the airport.Nawaz added that he stopped brother, Shehbaz Sharif, from returning because he wanted to know the government response on his return. “I left Shehbaz to look into party matters in cases the government arrests me. To a question, he said I cannot speculate what the government was going to do and the people would themselves observe what will be done by the government. However, he said the main objective of his return to the country was to restore democracy and serve the people.-SANA

Nawaz lands at Jeddah Airport

JEDDAH: Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif arrived in Saudi Arabia after being arrested and deported within hours of arriving in Pakistan from exile, Saudi sources said.
His plane landed in the city of Jeddah where he was met by Saudi officials. He has already spent seven years of exile in the Muslim Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and London. Saudi Arab again allowed him to live in the Kingdom, sources added.-SANA

Saudi Arabia to again accept Nawaz Sharif into exile

ISLAMABAD: Saudi Arabia will allow former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to return to exile in the kingdom after he was deported from Islamabad within hours of his arrival.
A private Pakistani television channel quoted Saudi sources as saying that the PML-N chief will be allowed to stay in the kingdom. Saudi Arabia had asked Sharif not to return to Pakistan. President Pervez Musharraf had sent Sharif to exile in Saudi Arabia in 2000 after toppling his government in 1999.-SANA

About the author

Rubab Saleem

Rubab Saleem is Editor of Pakistan Times

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