Who is Aafia Siddiqui, security prisoner referenced by Texas hostage taker?

Who is Aafia Siddiqui, security prisoner referenced by Texas hostage taker?

AP — The person who authorities say is keeping hostages inside of a Texas synagogue demanded the launch of a Pakistani female who is imprisoned close by on expenses of hoping to kill American services members in Afghanistan.

The lady, Aafia Siddiqui, is serving an 86-year jail sentence immediately after getting convicted in Manhattan in 2010 on fees that she sought to shoot US navy officers while being detained in Afghanistan two several years earlier.

For the Justice Division, which experienced accused Siddiqui of staying an al-Qaida operative, it was a sizeable conviction in the struggle in opposition to intercontinental extremism. But to her supporters, lots of of whom believed in her innocence, the scenario embodied what they observed as an overzealous publish Sept. 11-American judicial procedure.

Here’s a nearer appear at the scenario:

Who is Aafia Siddiqui?

She’s a Pakistani neuroscientist who examined in the United States at prestigious establishments — Brandeis College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

She attracted the focus of American law enforcement in the years following the Sept. 11 attacks. Best FBI and Justice Department described her as an “al-Qaeda operative and facilitator” at a May well 2004 news conference in which they warned of intelligence displaying al-Qaeda planned an attack in the coming months.

In 2008, she was detained by authorities in Afghanistan. American officers said they observed in her possession handwritten notes that talked about the construction of so-known as “dirty bombs” and that detailed a variety of spots in the US that could be specific in a “mass casualty assault.”

Within an interview place at an Afghan law enforcement compound, authorities say, she grabbed the M-4 rifle of 1 of a US Army officer and opened hearth on users of the US workforce assigned to interrogate her.

She was convicted in 2010 on fees which include trying to kill US nationals outside the house the United States. At her sentencing hearing, she gave rambling statements in which she shipped a message of entire world peace — and also forgave the choose. She expressed irritation at arguments from her possess legal professionals who stated she deserved leniency simply because she was mentally sick.

“I’m not paranoid,” she claimed at one particular level. “I don’t agree with that.”

What was the response?

Pakistani officers instantly decried the punishment, which prompted protests in a number of metropolitan areas and criticism in the media.

The key minister at the time, Yousuf Raza Gilani, named her the “daughter of the nation” and vowed to campaign for her release from jail.

In the decades given that, Pakistani leaders have overtly floated the idea of swaps or bargains that could outcome in her release.

Individuals rally demanding the launch of Aafia Siddiqui, who was convicted in February 2010 of two counts of attempted murder, all through Global Women’s Working day in Karachi, Pakistan, March 8, 2011. (AP Image/Fareed Khan)

Faizan Syed, Govt Director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Dallas Fort-Truly worth Texas, reported the team considers Siddiqui to have been “caught in the war on terror” and as perfectly as a political prisoner who was wrongly accused through flawed proof. He nonetheless strongly condemned the hostage-using, calling it wrong, heinous and “something that is completely undermining our attempts to get Dr. Aafia produced.”

She has also garnered guidance from accused militants in the United States. An Ohio person who admitted he plotted to get rid of US army users soon after acquiring teaching in Syria also prepared to fly to Texas and assault the federal prison the place Siddiqui is remaining held in an endeavor to free of charge her. The person, Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud, was sentenced in 2018 to 22 decades in prison.

What’s the most up-to-date on her imprisonment?

Siddiqui is currently being held at a federal prison in Fort Worthy of, Texas. She was attacked in July by another inmate at the facility and experienced significant injuries, according to court docket documents.

In a lawsuit against the federal Bureau of Prisons, Siddiqui’s lawyers explained a different inmate “smashed a coffee mug filled with scaling very hot liquid” into her facial area. When Siddiqui curled herself into a fetal posture, the other female commenced to punch and kick her, leaving her with accidents so extreme that she needed to be taken by wheelchair to the prison’s medical unit, the suit claims.

Siddiqui was left with burns all around her eyes and a a few-inch scar around her remaining eye, the lawsuit states. She also experienced bruises on her arms and legs and an injury to her cheek.

The assault prompted protests by human legal rights activists and religious teams, contacting for improved jail disorders. The activists have also named on the Pakistani governing administration to battle for her release from US custody.

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