NEWS FROM THE CELTIC LEAGUE
The United Kingdom Prime Minister, David Cameron, has raised the case of a Scottish grandfather being held on death row in Pakistan during a meeting (yesterday) with the country’s prime minister.
Mohammad Asghar, 70, who is from Edinburgh, was sentenced to death in January after being convicted of blasphemy.
In September, the pensioner, who suffers from paranoid schizophrenia, was shot and injured by a prison guard.
David Cameron reportedly sought assurances from Pakistani Prime Minister, Mohammad Nawaz Sharif, that Mr Asghar’s case would be handled correctly.
In September the Celtic League pressed the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) about Mr Asghar’s case.
We asked what steps they were taking following the unprovoked attack on him during which another man died.
In their reply the FCO said:
“We remain deeply concerned about the case of Mr Asghar, who was shot while in detention. Consular officials continue to monitor his situation and we continue to liaise with the authorities in Pakistan. We have raised his case at senior levels to ensure that he is receiving the best possible support and that there is an urgent investigation into the circumstances surrounding the shooting incident.”
They went on:
“We have previously raised our concerns about his wider case, including through the former Foreign Secretary and will continue to do so. It is crucial that concerns about Mr Asghar’s safety and mental health are addressed”
“This is a very serious situation and the Government is deeply concerned for the welfare of Mr Asghar”
Previously former Scottish First Minister, Alex Salmond, had met the Asghar family and pledged the support of his government for their campaign. At that time (see report below) the family seemed unimpressed by the interest David Cameron was showing in the case. The latest move by the British PM should go someway to redress that.
J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
(Please note that replies to correspondence received by the League and posted on CL News are usually scanned hard copies. Obviously every effort is made to ensure the scanning process is accurate but sometimes errors do occur.)
ISSUED BY THE CELTIC LEAGUE INFORMATION SERVICE.
The Celtic League has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It works to promote cooperation between these countries and campaigns on a broad range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, monitors all military activity and focuses on socio-economic issues
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