Former Pak PM Nawaz Sharif heading to UK
Former Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif was to end five years of exile in Saudi Arabia by travelling to Britain on Sunday, a spokesman said on Thursday.india Updated: Jan 27, 2006 04:49 IST
Former Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif was to end five years of exile in Saudi Arabia by travelling to Britain on Sunday, a spokesman said on Thursday.
Sharif was due to arrive at London's main Heathrow airport at 5:40 pm on a Saudi Airlines flight.
A spokesman for the opposition Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz party said nearly 3,000 people were expected to head to Heathrow in west London to receive him. Britain has a sizeable Pakistani minority population.
Pakistani Information Minister Sheikh Rashid announced in November that Sharif would be issued with a passport so he can travel to London with his sick son.
Rashid said Sharif -- who was prime minister from 1990 to 1993 and again from 1997 until 1999 -- would be free to go anywhere, but that "he cannot come to Pakistan".
Industrialist-turned politician Sharif was ousted by General Pervez Musharraf in a bloodless coup on October 12, 1999. He was sentenced to life in prison on tax evasion and treason charges.
Under a deal brokered by the Saudi royal family, President Musharraf released Sharif in December 2000 on condition he and his family live in exile in Saudi Arabia for 10 years.