Abducted Pakistani Lawyer and Activist Returns Home

    Abducted Pakistani Lawyer and Activist Returns Home
    Last updated Jun 02, 2023
    Image credit: Wikimedia Commons


    • On Friday, Pakistani police reported that human rights activist and lawyer Jibran Nasir had returned home safely after being abducted on Thursday. It's not yet known who was behind the kidnapping.[1]
    • Nasir's wife said that while driving home in the southern city of Karachi, the two were stopped by "at least 15" armed individuals in civilian clothing who "told [him] to get out of the car," abducting him.[2]
    • Nasir, a former independent candidate in the 2018 general elections from Karachi, has recently criticized the government crackdown on the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party and legal proceedings concerning individuals allegedly involved in riots.[3]
    • This comes as a number of journalists have reportedly been picked up by security forces as part of the crackdown, including Sami Abraham, who was detained in Islamabad, and Imran Riaz Khan, who was arrested at Sialkot airport in the eastern province of Punjab.[4]
    • Other journalists have been abducted under similar circumstances, leading to suspicion that Pakistan's intelligence services have been involved, though such involvement hasn't been proven.[2]
    • In response to the incident, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) said it was "deeply concerned," with the Prime Minister's Strategic Reforms advisor, Salman Sufi, also saying he was "disturbed by the news."[5]


    Narrative A

    While both the government and the opposition have expressed concerns over this news, the timing of Nasir's abduction is troubling. The Pakistani government has used abduction as a tool of repression before, which makes this seem like the ruling regime is going beyond former PM Imran Khan and his party members and starting to disappear independent journalists and other government critics.

    Narrative B

    As shown by the sadness expressed by his family and journalists, as well as the Prime Minister's office, Jibran Nasir's abduction sent shockwaves throughout the country. Everyone, from pro-government officials to fierce opposition journalists, came together to call for a thorough investigation, which has seen his safe return. It's now time to find the culprits behind this crime.

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