Pakistani Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad Faisal said that his country will not release physician Shakil Afridi, whom Washington values for his participation in the operation to kill terrorist leader Osama bin Laden, from prison. Pakistan will also not extradite him to the US.
According to the Foreign Ministry’s Press Office, the Minister made assurances at a briefing that the extradition of Afridi, who was sentenced to 23 years in prison, is not even under discussion.
Faisal was responding to media reports claiming that Pakistan may allegedly exchange Afridi for Aafia Siddiqui, who is serving a prison term in the United States.
In reply to a request by one of the journalists present to evaluate the reliability of information about the CIA's supposedly attempted in 2017 attempt to free the doctor from prison, Faisal replied that the matter "is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Internal Affairs."
Afridi was convicted of state treason and links with the leader of the terrorist organization Lashkar-e-Islam [aka Jaish-e-Islami]. Nevertheless, US President Donald Trump promised to secure his extradition "in two minutes” during his election campaign.