Islamabad Police arrest Imaan Mazari for ‘interference in state affairs’

Advocate Imaan Mazari addressing a press conference at National Press Club in Islamabad, on February 17, 2023. — Online
Advocate Imaan Mazari addressing a press conference at National Press Club in Islamabad, on February 17, 2023. — Online
  • Lawyer arrested in wee hours of Sunday morning.
  • Shireen Mazari terms her arrest an “abduction”.
  • Imaan also said “unknown persons” were breaking into her home.

The Islamabad Police has arrested Imaan Mazari, a human rights lawyer, from her Islamabad residence in the wee hours of Sunday morning.

Tarnol Police Station personnel confirmed that the lawyer was booked for interference in state affairs, staging a sit-in, and resistance.

Shireen Mazari, Imaan’s mother and former Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader, spoke with journalists at the Islamabad district court, revealing that personnel in plainclothes locked their guard in the guardroom before breaking into the house.

She added that they searched her room as well, and took away her phone. “Around 20 people entered the house. I saw six female police officers,” she complained.

The veteran politician questioned why their door was broken during the episode.

Mazari had earlier confirmed her daughter’s arrest on X, formerly Twitter.

Policemen in plainclothes including women personnel and paratroopers took Imaan away after breaking down their front door, she said.

The former human rights minister termed the act “an abduction”, sharing that they dragged Imaan out after being asked who they came for. They also took away their security cameras, laptops, and cell phones.

“They marched all over the house. My daughter was in her night clothes and said let me change but they just dragged her away,” the ex-PTI minister wrote on the microblogging site.

Mazari added that the personnel dragged her away and did not even allow her to change clothes. All of this, she said, was done without any warrants or legal procedures.

“State fascism,” she wrote, lamenting the treatment meted out to the mother-duo who live by themselves in the house.

Before her arrest, Imaan, herself, also posted an update on X, sharing about “unknown persons” breaking down their home cameras, banging the gate, and jumping over.

Meanwhile, a former member national assembly from South Waziristan, Ali Wazir, was also arrested by the Islamabad Police.

He, too, was booked for interfering in state affairs, the police said.

The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan has condemned Imaan’s arrest and demanded her immediate and unconditional release.

The organisation termed the Islamabad Police’s act “unacceptable”.

“The manner in which the @ICT_Police broke into her home, allegedly without a warrant, is unacceptable and points to a larger, more worrying pattern of state-sanctioned violence against people exercising their right to freedom of expression and assembly,” HRCP posted on X.


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