Karachi: Pakistani police on Friday used tear
gas to disperse protesters who shouted "Death to America" in
outrage after a US court jailed a woman scientist for 86 years
for attempting to murder US officers.
In a case that has been condemned across the
nuclear-armed Muslim nation of 167 million, the government
said it would petition Washington to secure the mother of
three`s repatriation on humanitarian grounds.
A New York court found Aafia Siddiqui, the once brilliant
scientist dubbed "Lady Qaeda" by the US tabloids, guilty of
the attempted murder of US military officers in Afghanistan in
2008 -- five years after she disappeared.
In Karachi, Siddiqui`s home town and Pakistan`s largest
city, police fired tear gas shells to prevent scores of people
from marching on the US consulate at the behest of the youth
wing of Islamist party Jamaat-e-Islami (JI).
The protesters shouted "Death to America," "Allahu
akbar" (God is greater), "Free Aafia Siddiqui" and "Down with
the US system of justice".
Hundreds of anti-riot police deployed on the main
Shahra-e-Faisal road to stop protesters from marching towards
the US mission.
Police official Javed Akbar Qazi said police arrested at
least 14 people for creating a disturbance. The protesters
later dispersed peacefully.
Hundreds more took to the streets in Pakistan`s second
largest city of Lahore. Cricket hero-turned-politician Imran
Khan led a rally to condemn the verdict as "unethical and
inhuman," a news agency reporter said.