These charges, however, are unrelated to the hunt for the former head of al-Qaeda. The crime Dr. Shakil Afridi (shown in photo) is accused of committing is connected to the death of a patient eight years ago at a hospital in the Khyber Agency region.
A Reuters article reports that Shakil Afridi's lawyer, Samiullah Afridi, said Pakistani government attorneys informed him Friday morning of the new charges filed against his client.
Two months ago, another court reversed a sentenced imposed against Afridi.
Quoting an unnamed official, Reuters reports that the murder charges stem from an accusation made by a woman who claims that Afridi caused the death of her son in 2005.
"She stated that he operated on her son at a hospital in Khyber Agency even though he was not a surgeon, and that caused [her son's] death," the official said, as reported by Reuters.
As was depicted in the movie Zero Dark Thirty, Dr. Afridi ran a vaccination program in that city that was allegedly just a front for a CIA operation to obtain a DNA sample that would verify bin Laden’s presence in the city. A senior CIA official told the New York Times that the effort ultimately was unsuccessful.
Although he was arrested for his alleged participation in the Osama bin Laden search operation, at his trial the government failed to prove his violation of the statute he was charged under, but on May 23, 2012, he was convicted nonetheless.
While the Obama administration has ignored Dr. Afridi’s case and refused to speak out against the evidence of extremely harsh treatment of its ersatz ally in the killing of bin Laden, others in Washington are aware of the disgrace and have tried to right the wrong.
Last year, Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) sought to to stall the confirmation of President Obama’s nominee to fill the post of U.S. ambassador to Pakistan. Paul wanted to stall the confirmation of the U.S. ambassador to Pakistan until that nation — which is deemed a U.S. ally in the War on Terror — released Dr. Afridi.
Paul’s efforts to help Afridi were unsuccessful — again.
This was not Senator Paul’s first foray into the fight for the doctor’s freedom. In a conference call with reporters in July 2012, Paul reiterated his call to withhold aid to Pakistan pending Afridi’s release.
All of Senator Paul’s attempts to assist Dr. Afridi were futile and now the doctor is in poor health with little hope of relief — judicial or otherwise.
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Photo of Dr. Shakil Afridi: AP Image