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Pakistan ex-premier shifted to prison near capital Islamabad

September 26, 2023 at 6:37 pm

Former Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan. [Photo by ARIF ALI/AFP via Getty Images]

Pakistan’s former Prime Minister, Imran Khan, was shifted to a prison near the capital, Islamabad, on Tuesday following a court order, officials and local media reported, Anadolu Agency reports.

The Islamabad High Court, on Monday, directed the authorities to shift Khan from Attock Jail to Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi on the request of his lawyers.

Footage aired on local broadcaster, Geo News, showed a heavily guarded convoy, including a bulletproof vehicle, supposedly carrying Khan, entering Adiala Jail.

Another footage shows PTI workers gathering a few kilometres from the jail and showering rose petals on the vehicle, which appears to be carrying Khan.

Earlier in the day, a local court extended Khan’s judicial remand for another 14 days in a case accusing him of exposing state secrets, his lawyer said.

The hearing of the case, commonly known as the “cipher case” was held at a prison due to “security reasons” in the north-eastern Attock district, about 80 kilometres (50 miles) from the capital, Islamabad, where Khan is currently incarcerated.

READ: Pakistan ex-diplomat likens Imran Khan’s overthrow to Egypt’s coup against Morsi

The case is related to diplomatic communications between Washington and Islamabad, which Khan says was part of a US conspiracy to topple his government.

Judge Abul Hasnat, who arrived from Islamabad to hear the case, extended Khan’s remand at the Prosecution’s request until 10 October.

“Imran Khan’s remand was extended till 10 October, which is a completely wrong decision as the Prosecution failed to submit its report and the judge extended his remand instead of honourably acquitting him,” Latif Khosa, Khan’s lawyer, told reporters outside the Attock Jail.

Former Foreign Minister,, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, on Tuesday, was brought into a court in Islamabad in handcuffs, and his judicial remand was also extended till 10 October. Qureshi was also arrested in the cipher case.

Khan is accused of exposing an official secret when he waved a confidential diplomatic letter at a rally last year.

The cricketer-turned-politician, who is facing a string of cases, was ousted through a no-trust vote in April 2022.

Pakistani authorities, on Monday, rearrested several women workers of Khan’s party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) soon after their release from a jail in Lahore.

According to the party, five of their women workers were released by a local court on bail, however, police rearrested them.

“Absolutely shameful how lawless Pakistan has become and how Court orders are being violated continuously. Female political prisoners in Pakistan continue to have their fundamental rights violated,” the PTI wrote on X.

Dozens of Khan’s supporters and party workers are in jail. They were arrested following violent protests broke out in major cities and towns across the country over Khan’s arrest on 9 May.

READ: Pakistan top judge eyes loopholes in former Premier’s conviction