Wife of American journalist Del Pearl, Mariane, hopes for justice even after the "unjust verdict by the Pakistan Supreme Court of acquitting terrorist Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh, the prime accused in the 2002 abduction and murder of the scribe."
In an opinion piece for The Washington Post, she wrote that before the Pakist top court's decision of acquitting the terrorist, Pearl's murder had been "disappearing in the dirty corridors of international politics and decades-long conflicts." "My husband's killer could go free in Pakistan. Despite the injustice, I still have hope," she headlined her article.
"Over the years, I have come to distrust man's ability to handle power. I have learned that so-called justice systems often have nothing to do with justice...The geopolitical tug of war over terrorism made it so that my infinitely complex, wholesome Danny boy was reduced to just 'the American,' or 'the journalist' or 'the Westerner'," she wrote.
Recalling the morning after the American journalist was abducted, she said that she did "not know whom to trust." She added that their house (in Pakistan) was full of police and shady agents.
"I looked for someone who could help me find Danny (nickname for Del Pearl). I chose a man standing apart from everybody else, quietly chain-smoking amid the chaos. Five weeks later, we learned Danny was dead. Everyone's pain was thick," her article for The Washington Post read further.
She recalled that when she received the news, she "could not cry. I didn't believe it".
Recalling how people helped her to cope with her husband's death, Pearl wrote, "This is what (the people who helped her) gives me hope in the face of so much injustice... I am convinced that true justice will never come from above."
A three-judge SC bench, headed by Justice Mushir Alam, directed to release the prime accused in Del Pearl murder case.
The top court dismissed the Sindh government's appeal against the Sindh High Court's (SHC) decision to overturn the conviction of Sheikh for killing the journalist.
In 2002, Pearl, the 38-year-old journalist of The Wall Street Journal's South Asia bureau, was abducted and beheaded while he was in Pakistan to investigate a story of terror groups' links to Al-Qaeda.
In December last year, the SHC directed to release Sheikh, Fahad Naseem, Sheikh Adil and Salman Saqib.
According to Daily Pakistan, the SHC also ordered putting the names of accused Sheikh and others in the exit control list (ECL).
The provincial government had approached the top court against the order of the SHC overturning the conviction of Sheikh.
In April 2020, the SHC had overturned the death sentence of Sheikh and sentenced him to seven years in prison and acquitted three other accused -- Fahad Naseem, Sheikh Adil and Salman Saqib -- who were earlier sentenced to life imprisonment by an anti-terrorism court (ATC). The accused have been in jail for the last 18 years and ordered the accused to appear as and when the court summons them.
The United States had expressed deep concerns over the SHC ruling to release multiple terrorists responsible for the murder of Pearl.
( With inputs from ANI )
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