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Transparency Int’l urges UK govt to probe Sharif’s London properties

LONDON: Transparency International, a global anti-corruption body, has urged the British government authorities to initiate probe into four properties of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif in London.

The TI statement comes after an accountability court in Pakistan convicted Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz for having properties in UK beyond known sources of income.

Transparency International Pakistan, which combats corruption around the world and prevents related criminal activities, said an official probe needs to be launched by the Theresa May-led UK government into four estates held by Sharif.

The corruption watchdog further demanded the British government not allow the Sharif to take refuge in its country. Should it be found that the properties were obtained through corruption-related funds, the leadership should seize them, the TI demanded.

Nawaz Sharif was ousted from his third term as prime minister by the Supreme Court last year following a corruption investigation and banned from politics for life, but remains a powerful symbol for his ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

Speaking at a press conference in London, Sharif framed the charges against him as a conspiracy by the establishment.

“This punishment cannot stop me from my struggle,” Sharif said adding he would return and face prison as soon as he is able to have a word with her wife who is on a ventilator. He also urged his supporters to vote for his party at upcoming national elections on July 25.

Small protests broke out after the verdict at the court in Islamabad, which was surrounded by heavy security, and in some other cities including Multan in Punjab, Sharif’s provincial stronghold.

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