In a new development, Pakistan to finalise extradition treaties with key global powers

In a new development, Pakistan to finalise extradition treaties with key global powers

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan to finalize crucial extradition treaties with key global powers including the United Kingdom (UK), China and other important states situated in the Gulf, Middle East and adjoining belt.

The move is likely to come into effect quickly as the Interior minister has directed the relevant authorities to come up with a concrete roadmap in this regard.

The Pakistani nationals will complete their remaining prison terms in Pakistan who are presently lodged in prisons of different countries under different charges as a result of extradition treaties, said interior ministry spokesman on Tuesday.

There are thousands of Pakistanis suffering in jails of US, UK , China and other Arab and European countries on account of the various crimes. Most of them are serving sentences for charges of drug smuggling and are under trial in many cases.

Pakistan has signed the extradition treaty with few countries such as Thailand and does not have such treaties with a large number of the countries. This phenomenon has been leading the country to a number of issues when it comes to extradition of Pakistani nationals who are wanted by law but are residing abroad in the countries with which Pakistan does not have a bilateral agreement of exchange of offenders.

The move of the interior minister will bring a lot of positive changes on the international image of Pakistan, according to sources in the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA). This was a long awaited demand of all law enforcement agencies including the FIA that Pakistan should sign the extradition treaties with all the countries of the world for smooth exchange of criminals who are wanted by law, stated the sources.

The sources said that the Pakistanis would have lesser issues while getting visas of the countries when the treaties are signed with them. “While awarding visas to Pakistanis, these countries would be satisfied enough on the grounds that when Pakistanis are found involved in petty issues, they would be easily extradited to Pakistan.”

The signing of extradition treaty of UK will have a great impact on the cases related with the founder of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) Altaf Hussain who is a UK national.

Last year, the FIA had filed a case against Altaf Hussain on charges of terror financing and money laundering. The case was filed on the complaint of businessman Sarfaraz Anwar Merchant in which he alleged that the funds received by the non-profit organisation Khidmat-e-Khalq Foundation (KKF) were transferred to the accounts of different MQM members and business organisations.

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