His defense lawyer says a Pakistani court has ordered the release of a British-born Islamist militant accused of kidnapping and killing Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in 2002.
Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh was sentenced to death in 2002 for masterminding Pearl’s murder, but his sentence was overturned this year. He has been in jail ever since he awaited the outcome of several appeals and legal arguments.
The sheikh’s role in Pearl’s assassination has long been controversial. The 47-year-old is known to have been involved in the kidnapping of a journalist who was interrogating al-Qaeda in the southern Pakistani city of Karachi when he went missing in January 2002, but was killed. Did not participate .
In April, the Sindh High Court found that the murder charge had not been proved, but upheld the seven-year sentence for kidnapping. Three others were sentenced to life in prison for their role in the plot. The decision stunned the US government, Pearl’s family and journalism advocacy groups.
Sheikh’s sentencing was demonstrated by Pakistan as evidence of its commitment to the US-led war on terror, which began after the 9/11 attacks in 2001, killing 3,000 people in New York and Washington. Were
Instead of Pearl’s assassination, which was filmed and posted online, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, may have carried out the events at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
In 2007, U.S. officials said Muhammad, who had been systematically tortured since his capture in Pakistan in 2003, had personally confessed to killing Pearl during a military hearing at Guantanamo Bay.
The Sindh High Court’s release order annulled the Pakistani high court’s decision that Sheikh should remain in custody, while Pearl’s family has appealed against his acquittal.
Sheikh’s lawyer, Mahmoud Sheikh, immediately called his client. Demanded release.
The Pearl family’s lawyer, Faisal Siddiqui, said the sheikh would be released until the appeal was completed, but that he would return to jail if the family succeeded in removing Bragi.
Separate appeals are being made against the acquittal of the government and Pearl’s family, a process that could take years under Pakistani law. The government opposes Sheikh’s release, saying it would endanger the people. The Supreme Court will resume hearing on January 5.
Sheikh grew up in East London and attended a private school where he gained notoriety for his rudeness. The son of a prosperous Pakistani-born businessman, he briefly studied at the London School of Economics before joining an organization coordinating relief activities for Muslims during the Bosnian war.
Based on his experience in the Balkans, Sheikh traveled to Pakistan, where he joined an extremist group. After months of training in camps in Afghanistan, Sheikh was sent to India to kidnap tourists to secure the release of a senior militant imprisoned there.
Arrested in a police raid, he was imprisoned in India but was hijacked by extremists on an Indian Airlines flight in 1999, and was scheduled to return to Pakistan.
Sheikh laid a trap for Pearl in the early days of January 2002, although the real motives are not clear. After Pearl’s death, he eventually surrendered to city authorities.
According to an authoritative investigation and a 100-page report, research has been done over many years By staff and students at Georgetown University, Pakistani authorities deliberately use false testimony to identify Sheikh and his three accomplices as guilty of receiving a speeding sentence for murder.
While all four were involved in the kidnapping plot and were certainly guilty, they were not present at the time of Pearl’s murder. The report concludes that other people who were present at the time actually helped in the beheading.
The abduction and final execution of Pearl involved three sets of militants, investigators found: one, led by a sheikh, kidnapping a journalist. One second, which held him captive in a house on the outskirts of Karachi. And third, there were senior figures in al-Qaeda who killed him.
The decision to assassinate Pearl was taken later سیف العدیل, An Egyptian militant who had a lot of influence within al-Qaeda but was practically unknown to others at the time. Adil is now considered one of its most effective operators and a potential successor to Ayman al-Zawahiri as the organisation’s leader.
An investigation by Georgetown has revealed that US investigators have found that the pattern of veins in the hand while beheading Pearl in the video of his murder is similar to those seen in the pictures of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed’s hands. Investigators concluded that the journalist had been killed by al-Qaeda militants.
The report also found that most of those involved in the crime had escaped justice. Several Pakistanis were killed in clashes with security agencies, and one was shot dead by four unidentified men on motorcycles in 2009. Pearl was never fully interrogated by a Pakistani, including several of his bodyguards who held him captive during the execution. Officials.
Others have been sentenced to short prison terms for other crimes but have never been charged with involvement in Pearl’s murder.
Prior to Pearl’s abduction, Sheikh’s involvement in a series of extremist groups based in Pakistan, and the widespread role of such organizations in the detention and murder of journalists, had embarrassed Pakistani officials. Islamist extremist factions in Pakistan have had the full support of the country’s security services for decades.
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