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Pak military court convicts rights activist of espionage

ANI | Updated: Dec 05, 2021 21:50 IST


Islamabad [Pakistan], December 5 (ANI): A Pakistan military court has convicted rights and political activist Idris Khattak for espionage and sentenced him to 14 years of rigorous imprisonment.
Khattak was accused of providing the sensitive information to a foreign intelligence agency, Dawn newspaper on Saturday. According to the report, Khattak was tried under Pakistan Army Act and Official Secrets Act, 1923.
"Khattak was found guilty of espionage and leaking of sensitive information by a Field General Court Martial (FGCM). He was handed down a 14-year rigorous jail term," a security source disclosed to Dawn.

The Pakistani publication said that the verdict was pronounced this week after the trial concluded in Jhelum.
Responding to reports that human rights defender Idris Khattak, who was forcibly disappeared by Pakistan's authorities more than two years ago, has been declared guilty of treason under the Official Secrets Act (OSA) and faces a 14-year prison sentence,
Thyagi Ruwanpathirana Amnesty International's Deputy South Asia Director, said: "Idris Khattak's family and lawyer are being kept in the dark by the Pakistani authorities about the exact status of his case and reported conviction, violating the right to a fair trial and due process and making it impossible for them to plan any legal recourse.
"If his conviction is confirmed, it will be the culmination of a shameful two-year process that has been unjust from start to finish. Since being bundled into a car in 2019, Idris Khattak has been kept in an unknown location. Despite being a civilian, he was tried by a military court in a trial that took place in complete secrecy. Few details about the case against him have been disclosed and, according to his lawyer, the proceedings were deeply flawed.
"We urge Pakistan's authorities to immediately provide details of the case to the family, give him access to lawyers, and bring Idris Khattak before an ordinary civilian court to rule on the lawfulness of his arrest and detention. This case plainly demonstrates why enforced disappearances must, once and for all, be put to an end. It's time the authorities lifted the veil of secrecy shrouding the trial and his whereabouts." (ANI)

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