Have to consider 'significant legal, medical challenges': Musharraf's family on his return to Pakistan
The family of former military dictator Pervez Musharraf has said that "significant medical, legal, and security challenges" need to be considered before making a decision regarding his return to Pakistan.
The retired general is suffering from amyloidosis — a rare disease in which an abnormal protein called amyloid builds up in organs and tissues throughout the body. His illness first came to light in 2018.
Musharraf, who had left the country for Dubai in 2016, had been hospitalised for the past few weeks. Since news of his frail condition was reported, PML-N bigwigs have signalled their willingness to allow his return.
In a statement via Musharraf's official Twitter account on Saturday, the family said: "Communications have been received from official and unofficial channels that [Musharraf's] return home will be facilitated. We sincerely appreciate these overtures since Pakistan is home."
But, the family added that it had to consider "significant medical, legal and security challenges" in this regard.
"An uninterrupted supply and administration of experimental drug Daratumumab [is] needed alongside [the] associated treatment of amyloidosis that are currently not available in Pakistan," the family added.
Army, Nawaz on ‘same page’ over Musharraf’s return
Earlier this month, the retired general's family had said that Musharraf had been hospitalised for some time due to a complication of his ailment. However, the family had refuted reports that he had been placed on a ventilator.
"Going through a difficult stage where recovery is not possible and organs are malfunctioning. Pray for ease in his daily living," the family had said on June 10.
Since then, PML-N Supremo Nawaz Sharif and Inter-Services Public Relations Director General Maj Gen Babar Iftikhar both appear to be on the same page regarding Musharraf’s return to Pakistan.
In an interview with anchor Kamran Shahid on Dunya News on June 14, DG Iftikhar said that Musharraf’s return to Pakistan from the UAE was a decision for his family and doctors to make, adding: “The stance of the institution and its leadership is that he should come back.”
Hours after the ISPR DG’s comments were aired, former prime minister and PML-N supreme leader Nawaz Sharif also tweeted about Musharraf’s mooted return to the country, saying: “I have no personal enmity or animosity towards Pervez Musharraf. I don’t want anyone else to suffer the trauma I have had to endure.”
Nawaz, whose democratically-elected government was ousted by Musharraf in the 1999 coup, was first imprisoned, tried and then sent into exile. But in his tweet, the former PM called on the government to facilitate his one-time political adversary and prayed for his health.
Defence Minister Khawaja Asif had also expressed support for the notion of Musharraf’s return, saying that there should be no obstacle to his coming back. The issue was also discussed in the Senate last week.
On March 30, 2014, Musharraf was indicted for suspending the Constitution on November 3, 2007.
On December 17, 2019, a special court handed Musharraf death sentence in the high treason case against him.
The former military ruler left the country in March 2016 for Dubai to seek medical treatment and hasn't returned to Pakistan since.