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Tuesday, 19 November, 2002, 10:13 GMT
Top Pakistani surgeon freed
Dr Aamir Aziz
Dr Aziz is resting at home, his family say
One of Pakistan's top doctors has been released after a month in custody on suspicion of having links with the Taleban.

The family of Dr Aamir Aziz said he had arrived home before dawn in the eastern city of Lahore, and had not been charged with any offence.


I am just thankful to Allah Almighty that my son is back with me

Zakia Aziz, doctor's mother
Pakistan's Interior Minister, Moinuddin Haider, had said Dr Aziz was detained in the light of information given to American interrogators questioning al-Qaeda suspects.

But the authorities refused to say where he was being held or what he was accused of.

His detention triggered protests by lawyers' and doctors' groups, and last week the Lahore High Court ordered the authorities to produce him.

Tuesday was the deadline by which the authorities were ordered to produce the doctor before a court.

Dr Aziz's brother said: "His eyes are red and swollen due to sleepless nights."

Afghan visit

The doctor's family and friends say he was taken away by Pakistani officials working with US agents, who are pursuing Taleban and al-Qaeda fugitives in Pakistan.

Dr Aziz, a leading orthopaedic surgeon, visited Afghanistan during Taleban rule.

But his family say he went to rebuild a medical college and had no links with the Taleban themselves.

The Pakistani Government abandoned its traditional links with the Taleban after the 11 September attacks and pledged to support the US-led war on terror.

See also:

13 Nov 02 | South Asia
08 Nov 02 | South Asia
07 Nov 02 | South Asia
25 Oct 02 | South Asia
09 Oct 02 | Country profiles
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