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Okara Lawyer Critical Of State Policies Abducted

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Advocate Shafiq Ahmad Awan of Okara has been abducted from near his home in Okara, the second time after his previous abduction in June.

The lawyer has been critical of state policies and has written in favour of civilian supremacy. The journalist had been forcibly disappeared before in July and was released after ‘alleged torture’.

Journalist Ahmed Noorani shared the video of the advocate’s abduction on Twitter, and stated that the government must act immediately, and that Pakistan must not become a banana republic.

A journalist associated with Amnesty International South Asia, Rabia Mahmood, stated that Advocate Shafiq was forcibly disappeared from outside his home on December 10, and his whereabouts are yet unknown. She added that Shafiq was picked up in June for 10 hours, and had subsequently revealed that he had been tortured.

She also stated that advocate Shafiq continued to criticise state policies and speak for civilian supremacy after his abduction in June, adding that he had alerted activists about threats in late November.

Former senator Afrasiab Khattak stated that in a hybrid martial law regime, talking about human rights and law is a crime, adding that political parties, parliamentarians, lawyers and civil society must speak out for him.

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