Sheikh Rashid Detained. Is Imran Khan Next?

Sheikh Rashid is well known for his boisterous personality and his attraction to the media lime light. Even those who do not agree with his politics often find him entertaining. The former minister has gone through a number of political transformations, though lately it seems that he has come full circle – and it appears that international authorities are taking notice.

Last Wednesday, American authorities detained Sheikh Rashid for several hours as he was trying to return to Pakistan from Texas. Rashid was eventually permitted to leave, but only after his phones were confiscated and all data obtained by the American authorities.

A clue as to why he was not permitted to exit the US can be found in the details of the Americans questions while he was detained. Speaking to journalist Azeem Mian, Rashid explained that the American authorities had interrogated him about his involvement with Difa-e-Pakistan Council.

This is not the first time that Sheikh Rashid’s links to militant groups have caused problems for his international travel. In 2005, even as a federal minister Sheikh Rashid was denied visa to India to attend the Indo-Pak cricket series because of his previous support for militant groups in Kashmir.

Gen (R) Mirza Aslam Baig confirmed that same year that Sheikh Rashid used to run a militant camp in Rawalpindi. During his tenure with the Musharraf regime, though, Sheikh Rashid reinvented himself as a supporter of Gen. Musharraf’s “enlightened moderation”.

But it seems that Rashid has abandoned his support for moderation. He has been an active supporter of Difa-e-Pakistan Council (DPC) regularly appearing on stage at its ‘Go America Go’ rallies and joining with Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed and Amir JI Syed Munawar Hassan in warning against reopening NATO supplies through Pakistan.

Ijaz ul Haq Syed Munawar Hasan Abul Khair Zubair Hamid Gul Hafiz Saeed Sheikh Rashid Samiul Haq Difa e Pakistan

Only after Ambassador Sherry Rehman intervened with the American authorities was Sheikh Rashid released from detention – something most Pakistanis will not have the privilege of counting on if they find themselves in similar circumstances.

There is now speculation that PTI supporters could face similar questioning by US authorities, and that Imran Khan was warned by well wishers not to travel to the US for a planned fundraising tour that included a $5,000 per person luncheon. Some are concerned that Imran Khan’s ability to put on a moderate face with American media while supporting militant leaders like Hafiz Saeed and sharing the stage with pro-jihad personalities like Gen. (R) Hamid Gul at anti-American seminars. If American authorities are interested in the data on Sheikh Rashid’s phone, many wonder, are they interested in money being collected also?

So far, Sheikh Rashid’s detention is being down played and treated as a possible misunderstanding. But it could be that this is the first sign of a new policy by American authorities of ‘zero tolerance’ for supporting extremist groups and projecting anti-Americanism. Is Imran Khan next?

6 thoughts on “Sheikh Rashid Detained. Is Imran Khan Next?

  1. Americans must be treated like that in pakistan.but unfortunately current politico elite regime in pakistan ,becomes an american stooge.itz time fr nation to react and shouldnt depend on so called rationals,civil society members bcoz they r the paid servants of US.They r bound to defend US any how.dont trust media mongers and sharif zadas of punjab.dont frget that sharifs r paid workers of CIA,CIA rescue them in 1999 and get them into saudi puppet regime.

  2. Sheikh Rashid is the man who enjoyed a lot of privilege and power in the time of Perveaz Musharraf tenure.He had the various position with minister ship under the dictatorship.It is very unfortunate for him that Dictator was gone and left behind the lot’s of former ministers team like him.This team try to join the other apolitical parties,its again unfortunately for Sheikh Rashid is not fit for the parties.Therefore at this time he is liked the political pendulum,he tried to make collection between him and PTI or some time take the U turned toward his old Guru NAWAZ Sharif party PMLN,but not adjusted yet.He is completely confused,he also run behind the jihad’s,some time he participate their rallies,he feel full on confidant with jihad’s,because he is pro-establishment,he also grown-up with the theory that believing get power through the third forces, basically not through election,man like Sheikh Rashid have not much faith in election for himself.He has been supporting to militant group (DPC)with the accordances of his ideology,if he and his other are not succeeded through election,then they build up the pressure group DPC make people fool on the name of religion and they create the vacuum and chaos in the country,then provide the space for the military take over,then they gets the high-profile position again.Its seem not to be good for American authorities,now the time of Sheikh Rashid visited to America they showed him some reprobation,hope he and his colleagues might learn some lesson.Militant mind like Sheikh Rashid Imran Khan and Gul Hamid got the agenda against present government,they are putting in the mind of the people of Pakistan that Zardari government is the demi of the American’s.Therefore next election kick them out.And they will provide the alternative leadership so called Islamic system and government.

  3. PTI was right to cancel American fundraisers. CIA and FBI are surely watching these closely and taking list of attendees made possible by infiltrators in PTI USA also.

  4. It shows how americans mind works.They are a terrified nation.They do not know,that all the terrorist they created to work for them and kill their own people in their own countries are coming of age and have realised how they were used by americans.This reality,is causing hate for terrorist americans in the world.
    It won’t help them by detaining people like Sheikh Rashid or Immran Khan,but,it will create more hate for them.The champion of democracy is now forced to abondone its basic term of its constituetion i.e.free speech and freedom of personal believes.What a shame on americans.

  5. yes…….. exactly, He who will not obey americans terms and condition, will fall in the same catagory

  6. Pingback: Imran Khan’s “Interrogation” A Publicity Stunt? « New Pakistan

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