Islamabad / London
The UK Home Office has rejected former Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visa extension request with exemption from the right of appeal. Since then, there has been speculation that Nawaz Sharif will return to Pakistan to serve the remainder of his sentence. Nawaz Sharif, 71, convicted in two corruption cases in Pakistan, has lived in London since November 2019. While the Lahore High Court allowed her to travel abroad for four weeks for treatment.
Nawaz Sharif to appeal verdict
Pakistani media Dawn News quoted Pakistani Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) spokeswoman Maryam Aurangzeb as saying the UK Home Office refused to extend Muhammad Nawaz Sharif’s visa. Aurangzeb said an appeal can be made against the Home Office’s decision and that until then the PML-N supremo will remain in the UK. It is unclear how long Sharif’s current UK visa is valid, according to the report.
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Pakistan will have to return in 6 months if visa is not extended
Hussain Nawaz Sharif, son of triple Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, confirmed to Geo News that a petition has been lodged with the British Immigration Authority against the Home Office’s decision. A foreign national cannot stay in the UK for more than six months in a row while awaiting a visa extension. Sharif has reportedly requested an extension so far and his request has also been granted.
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Hard blow for the Sharif family
While the UK Home Office’s directive is a setback for the powerful Sharif family, legal experts believe their plea to stay in the UK is strong given their state of health. The same was clearly expressed by the leadership of the PML-N. Sharif spokesman Mohammad Zubair said the party would pursue all legal options for Sharif’s continued treatment in Britain.
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Imran Khan’s government wants to take credit
Upon news of Nawaz Sharif’s refusal to extend the visa, Imran Khan’s government in Pakistan is ready to take the credit. The ruling PTI leaders call this a diplomatic success for Imran Khan. If Nawaz Sharif returns to Pakistan, he will have to serve the remainder of his sentence in prison. At the same time, there are many ongoing cases against his brother Shahbaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz Sharif.
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Imran has already convicted Nawaz
After Imran Khan became Prime Minister, the NAB tightened the noose on Nawaz Sharif’s family the most. On July 28, 2017, the Supreme Court of Pakistan disqualified Sharif from the post of prime minister while he heard corruption charges against him. In fact, Sharif was charged with money laundering and buying property in London while he was Prime Minister in the 1990s. The problem with these properties arose in 2016 after the Panapa Paper leaks, which allegedly been managed by offshore companies owned by Sharif’s children.