Backroom dealings are underway to release a hero. Dr. Shakil Afridi is the hero doctor who helped the CIA find Usama Bin Laden. These negotiations have gained momentum the past few weeks. Multiple sources told Fox News he could be released as early as May. The Obama administration left Afridi to rot in a Pakistani jail for five-and-a-half years. According to an Islamabad official, talks about Afridi’s possible release gained steam toward the end of last year. Since the new Trump administration took the White House, there’s been a renewed willingness to bring the hero doctor out. They are working on figuring out a means to have the doctor – who is said to be declining in health – discharged. Another well-placed source, a U.S intelligence government contractor, told Fox News that there is a lot of “backroom dealing” between Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and the Pakistan Army on the matter. The two parties are negotiating concessions, with a release possible as early as three to four months.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and the newly-appointed ISI Chief, Naveed Mukhtar, are said to have both asked for immunity for Afridi. But before that could move forward it needs approval from the Army Chief of Operations, Gen. Waseem Ashraf. The former military leader, Gen. Raheel Sharif, retired late last year and the power shift now to Ashraf delayed the process.
“Ultimately, Gen. Ashraf decides Afridi’s status,” the source said.
The hero doctor was arrested on charges of treason. The Afghan government which purports to be an ally of the U.S on its war on terror imprisoned the doctor after it was known it was the doctor who helped US officials bag Bin Laden. He was jailed a few weeks after the Bin Laden kill on May, 2011 raid. He was sentenced to 33 years in jail. He was abandoned by President Obama. Its a cowardly betrayal of a man who risked his life forus.
This hero doctor helped U.S Navy SEALs take down the world’s most wanted man. Obama took a bow, then the hero was later sentenced to 33 years for having militant group connections.
U.S. officials have repeatedly condemned Afridi’s imprisonment and expressed regret for exposing his identity by making details of the raid public. The State Department issued the same statement to Fox News that it did over a year ago, insisting that his imprisonment was “unjust” and that the matter continues to be raised “at the highest levels during discussions with Pakistan.”
But so far the Obama administration had not done anything to help him. Now under a new administration; we see some movement.
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