Court orders former Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif removed from no-fly list

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Supporters of Pakistani former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif chant slogans outside the Lahore High court, in Lahore, Pakistan, Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019. (AP)
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Supporters of Pakistani former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif react to the court's decision in Lahore, Pakistan, Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019. (AP)
Updated 17 November 2019

Court orders former Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif removed from no-fly list

  • Pakistan’s ailing ex-premier granted four-week stay abroad for treatment

LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Saturday ordered the government to remove former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s name from the country’s exit control list for four weeks with no conditions attached. Shahbaz Sharif, president of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), filed a petition on Friday challenging the government to allow Nawaz Sharif to travel abroad for medical treatment.
A two-member bench comprising Justice Ali Baqar Najfi and Justice Sardar Ahmad Naeem heard the case and prepared a draft of Shahbaz’s undertaking to guarantee his brother’s return, ensuring permission to travel would not be used to engineer a second exile.
Shahbaz Sharif’s lawyer, Ashtar Ausaf, told local media that the draft had been accepted by the party.
Nawaz Sharif, 69, who has held the country’s top political office three times, is serving a seven-year sentence on corruption charges and was granted bail on health grounds.
The government approved his request to allow him to seek treatment abroad, but with a 7 billion rupee ($45.2 million) bond specifying his date of return — conditions that he rejected.
Shahbaz said the government’s conditional approval was an “intentional delay” with “no legal, constitutional or judicial basis.”

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Nawaz Sharif, 69, is serving a seven-year sentence on corruption charges and was granted bail on health grounds.

Addressing reporters in Lahore, Shahbaz said that the government’s “terrible demand” could be life-threatening to the ailing former premier whose health was rapidly deteriorating.
Law Minister Farogh Naseem said on Wednesday that the government’s approval “will be a one-time permission” and that “Sharif will be allowed to go anywhere in the world but will have to return in four weeks.”
Permission was granted to fulfill the government’s obligation in view of the former prime minister’s “critical medical condition,” he said.
PML-N Chairman Raja Zafrul Haq told Arab News that the government is admitting that Sharif is seriously ill, but is also creating hurdles to stop him traveling abroad for treatment.
“The court has granted him an eight-week bail, but the government is reducing that to four weeks and imposing an irrational condition. It is to be condemned and we strongly protest this decision,” he said.


FBI: Saudi shooter believed to have acted alone in US Navy base attack

Updated 41 min 2 sec ago

FBI: Saudi shooter believed to have acted alone in US Navy base attack

  • Special agent Rachel Rojas thanked Saudi Arabia for its cooperation in the investigation
  • Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani was shot dead after he opened fire and killed three people at the base in Florida

PENSACOLA: Investigators believe a Saudi Air Force lieutenant acted alone on Friday when he killed three people and wounded eight at a US Navy base in Pensacola, Florida before being fatally shot by police, the FBI said on Sunday.
Rachel Rojas, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Jacksonville office, said the shooter used a Glock model 45 9mm handgun that he had purchased legally in Florida.
“We currently assess there was one gunman who perpetrated this attack and no arrests have been made in this case,” Rojas, the lead investigator on the case, said at a news conference.
“We are looking very hard at uncovering his motive and I would ask for patience so we can get this right,” she said.
Authorities confirmed the suspect was a member of the Royal Saudi Air Force who was on the base as part of a US Navy training program designed to foster links with foreign allies.
The FBI identified him as Second Lt. Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani, 21.
A sheriff’s deputy fatally shot the gunman, authorities said, ending the second deadly attack at a US military base within a week. Within hours, Saudi Arabia’s King Salman had called US President Donald Trump to extend his condolences and pledge the Kingdom’s support in the investigation.
Rojas said there were several Saudi students who were close to the shooter and are cooperating with investigators.
“Their Saudi commanding officer has restricted them to base, and the Saudi government has pledged to fully cooperate with our investigation,” she said. “I thank the kingdom for their pledge of full and complete cooperation.”

Meanwhile, a second victim was identified as Airman Mohammed Sameh Haitham, 19, of St. Petersburg, Florida, who joined the Navy after graduating from high school last year, according to the Tampa Bay Times.
Haitham's mother, Evelyn Brady, herself a Navy veteran, said the commander of her son's school called her and told her Haitham had tried to stop the shooter.