MABAD - A number of citizens Tuesday protested in front of the Parliament by lighting candles, protesting the illegal abduction and detainment of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui and other missing persons in United States prisons.
Relatives of the missing persons, civil society activists along with students, teachers, doctors, journalists, professionals, and representatives of human rights organisations were present at the occasion. Dr. Atia Anayatullah (PML-QA), Senator Talha Mehmood and Syed Bilal President Jamaat-e- Islami were also present at the occasion.
Over 300 people lit candles to show solidarity against the abduction of Dr. Aafia. They wore red scarves and bands as a sign of emergency and raised slogans against her detention.
Protests and Candle-lit vigils were planned in various countries in support of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui. The start of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui trial had been declared Free Dr Aafia Siddiqui Day across the U.S., UK, Pakistan, Australia, Spain, Qatar, Turkey, and the Middle East. In Pakistan, peaceful vigils were held in Karachi and Lahore press clubs and Islamabad along with other international venues at the same time.
Participants at the occasion vehemently condemned her detention and appealed for efforts to secure her immediate release. Dr Aafia is a daughter of Pakistan and her return to Pakistan is a very vital issue, they noted.
They said that the Government must take immediate steps for safe recovery of all the missing persons including Dr. Aafia. They said that after taking charge in January 2009, American President Barack Obama said that he would work for protecting human rights, and closure of Guantanamo prison was the proof of his statement.
In accordance with the said statement of the American President, they continued that American government must release Dr. Aafia immediately.
While talking to TheNation, Chairperson Defence of Human Rights in Pakistan (DHRP) Amina Janjua, who is the wife of one of the missing persons Masood Janjua, said that Dr. Aafia went missing in 2003.She had spent many years in pain and miseries, and we are here to show solidity against her abduction and pain, she added.