Pakistan: Leeds man on Death Row facing imminent execution after unfair trial
Family and Amnesty International implore President Musharraf to commute sentence as he visits European Parliament in Brussels
The family of joint UK-Pakistan national Mirza Tahir Hussain, who is on death row in Pakistan, today (11 September) implored President Musharraf, who is visiting Brussels this week, to commute Mirza’s death sentence.
In letters delivered to the President of the European Parliament, Mr Josep Borrell Fontelles, and to the members of the Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee (which President Musharraf will address later this week), Mirza’s family and Amnesty International said that Mirza’s stay of execution expires on 1 October and that he could face death by hanging in weeks. It is hoped that the President of the European Parliament and members of the Foreign Affairs Committee will raise the case in their meetings with President Musharraf.
Amjad Hussain, Mirza’s brother, said:
“My brother did not commit the crime of murder that he has been convicted of. His trial was unfair and his detention in Pakistan for the last 18 years has destroyed all our lives. I implore President Musharraf to end our agony by commuting the sentence, and I hope our elected representatives in the European Parliament can persuade him to do so.”
Amnesty International UK Director Kate Allen said:
“A British citizen is facing imminent execution in a foreign jail. The death penalty is always cruel and unnecessary and doesn’t deter crime, and in this case we may see an innocent man sent to his death if President Musharraf is not convinced to commute the sentence.”
The campaign to stop Mirza Tahir Hussain’s execution is supported by the Islamic Human Rights Commission, Reprieve, Fair Trials Abroad, the Muslim Parliament of Britain, the Bar Human Rights Committee and Human Rights Watch.
The letters to the President of the European Parliament, Mr Josep Borrell Fontelles, and to the members of the Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee are available on request.
Mirza Tahir Hussain was sentenced to death in Pakistan in 1989 for the murder of a local taxi driver. He alleges the driver attempted to assault him and that he killed the man in self-defence. In August Mirza Tahir Hussain received a stay of execution which expires on 1 October from when he can expect to receive an execution warrant from the prison authorities.
Take action on Mirza Tahir Hussain's case - send an urgent appeal to President Musharraf