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FIA arrests Pashtun rights activist Gulalai Ismail at Islamabad airport

FIA arrests Pashtun rights activist Gulalai Ismail at Islamabad airport

ISLAMABAD: Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has detained rights activist Gulalai Ismail at Islamabad airport following her return from London on Friday morning.

The development was confirmed by Islamabad International Airport officials and Ismail.

Ismail said that when she returned to Islamabad, she was told by FIA officials that her name was on the Exit Control List.

Subsequently, the Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM) member said she had been detained at the airport while FIA officials said they were preparing some “necessary documents”.

Airport sources said the FIA took Ismail into custody upon her arrival in Islamabad after her Qatar Airways flight. They added that the PTM activist’s name was on the ECL.

After Ismail lost contact with her father said the FIA had arrested her and will hand her over to Swabi police officials who are currently on their way to Islamabad.

Swabi police on Aug 13 registered an FIR against 19 PTM leaders, including Ismail, for their involvement in a public gathering in Swabi where PTM’s Manzoor Pashteen and Ismail both addressed the crowd.

PTM leaders said that they had already challenged the FIR in the Peshawar High Court and the next hearing of the case is on Oct 25.

Ismail, a Pashtun and women’s rights activist, was in 2017 awarded the Reach all Women in War Anna Politovskaya Award.