WASHINGTON — A militant group leader in Pakistan is suing the country’s foreign minister for his remarks at an Asia Society event last week in New York. A lawyer representing Hafiz Mohammad Saeed sent a $950,000 (100 million Pakistani Rupee) notice to Pakistan Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif on Friday.
“An absolute lie and falsehood that Hafiz Muhammad Saeed is one of those persons who had been the darlings of Americans and had been dining and wining in the White House,” Saeed’s lawyer, A.K. Dogar alleged, according to media reports. The lawsuit calls on Asif to offer an apology within two weeks or face punishment. Defamatory statements are punishable under the Pakistan Penal Code with up to five years imprisonment and a fine, according to Dogar.
Refuting recent allegations by the United States and BRICS, an economic bloc composed of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, that Pakistan harbors violent extremist groups that pose a threat to regional security, Asif denied that his country supports such groups.
“Don’t blame us for the Haqqanis [the Haqqani Network] and don’t blame us for the Hafiz Saeeds. These people were your darlings just only 20 to 30 years back. They were being dined and wined in the White House and now you say ‘go to hell Pakistanis because you are nurturing these people’,” Asif said, referring to the U.S. support to Afghan resistance movement during the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in the 1980s.
Saeed’s lawyer alleged that his client is a “patriotic Islam-loving Muslim” who refrains from consuming intoxicants, which are forbidden in Islam. “I have been advised by Hafiz Muhammad Saeed to tell you that he has never been near the White House, not to speak of [being] wined and dined. It is shocking to know that the foreign minister of my country is accusing Hafiz Muhammad Saeed of taking wine,” Dogar said in the notice.
Source & Pic : VoANews