Police stop US envoy from seeing Aitzaz
LAHORE: Police prevented US Ambassador Anne Patterson on Monday from meeting detained lawyer Aitzaz Ahsan.
Patterson had earlier requested permission to meet Aitzaz. However, when the envoy arrived at his home, she was barred from seeing him, but was allowed to meet his wife, Bushra, along with several lawyers, reported Reuters.
Assistant Superintendent Jail Ghulam Sarwar Sumra, who is deputed at the residence of Aitzaz, told Daily Times that the US envoy did not have permission from the Home Department to meet Aitzaz.
Meanwhile, Patterson told reporters that she would attempt to meet Aitzaz at a later time. The impromptu press conference was interrupted by two US human rights activists who protested against the Bush administration’s continued support of President Pervez Musharraf. Bushra Aitzaz detailed her meeting with Patterson and told Daily Times that the US envoy had expressed grave concerns about the ongoing political unrest in Pakistan. “The US is not appreciating these ongoing arrests and suspension of judges and constitution. How are transparent elections possible when political figures are under arrest,” Bushra quoted Patterson as saying.
Later, following a meeting with HRCP chairwoman Asma Jehangir, Patterson said credible elections required a free media and a free civil society. rana tanveer/reuters