New Delhi: A sinister plan of the Pakistani intelligence agencies to eliminate a Pakistani dissident living in exile in The Netherlands has got exposed with the arrest of a person tasked to carry out the killing.
The British police arrested Mohammad Gohir Khan, a Pakistan-born British citizen, following information that he was planning to kill Ahmad Waqass Goraya, a blogger who has been living in The Netherlands since 2007.
The arrest prevented yet another killing of a Pakistani dissident in exile, after similar cases were witnessed in Canada and Sweden since March last year.
On Tuesday, Khan was produced at the Old Bailey Central Criminal Court in London which said he is accused of “conspiring with persons unknown” to kill Goraya.
Goraya has been in hiding ever since The Netherlands police warned him on February 12 of serious threats to his life.
According to the investigations, Khan went to Amsterdam from London by train in February and hired a car to locate the residence of Goraya lived in Rotterdam.
Goraya has been on the hit list of the notorious intelligence agencies of Pakistan.
In 2017, during a visit to Pakistan, Goraya was kidnapped and tortured for several weeks.
He said a “government institution linked to the army” was responsible for it and immediately returned to The Netherlands.
Subsequently, on February 2 this year, he was assaulted by two men outside his Rotterdam home, after which he told Reporters Without Borders (RSF) that the attack “fits the modus operandi of Pakistani spy agencies.”
Earlier, another Pakistani journalist and Editor of Balochistan Times Sajid Hussain was found dead in mysterious circumstances in Sweden in April last year, days after he disappeared on March 2.
It was the handiwork of Pakistani intelligence agencies, which carried out a similar killing earlier this year of a woman Baloch leader in Canada, where she was living in exile.
RSF has called on the British and Dutch police to do everything possible to identify the accomplices of Khan.
The police should question Pakistani diplomatic personnel, RSF said.
“We are relieved to learn of the progress in the judicial proceedings against the person who planned to murder Ahmad Waqass Goraya,” said Daniel Bastard, the head of RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk.
“But let’s not forget that a conspiracy is not an isolated act. We therefore urge the British and Dutch police to do everything possible to identify this murder plot’s accomplices and instigators. No lead should be neglected and, if necessary, they should summon Pakistani diplomatic representatives in Europe for questioning.”
RSF said when it contacted Goraya during yesterday’s hearing in London, he said he sensed, “the beginning of an awareness that Pakistani dissidents are not safe in western countries.”
And, referring to Khan’s detention, he added: “This arrest is a first important step towards justice and accountability. The hunt for dissidents must be stopped.”