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Political deal:’Nawaz would escape corruption trial to live in exile’

LONDON -UNS : Currently facing a corruption trial, former prime minister Nawaz Sharif would ditch the courts and be allowed to live in exile under a potential deal being brokered by Saudi Arabia, British newspaper The Times reported on Thursday.

The newspaper, quoted sources to maintain that the former PM is also ready to quit practical politics “without facing prosecution” and has been forced to change his preferred line of succession by naming his brother Shahbaz Sharif instead of his daughter Maryam Nawaz.
It is pertinent to note here that earlier in the day, Nawaz Sharif left Saudi Arabia to join his brother, Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif and fellow party leader Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique.

Sharif is to hold meetings with the top Saudi leadership, including King Salman and Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman, and “discuss with them various aspects of friendly bilateral relation between two Muslim brotherly states”, a Sharif-family friend had informed media.

Shahbaz Sharif had left for the Kingdom on Wednesday in a special plane sent by the Saudi government.

Supreme Court of Pakistan disqualified Nawaz Sharif from office in July, 2017 over undeclared assets and ordered a criminal probe into the Sharif family over allegations stemming from the “Panama Papers” leaks of international offshore companies.

The Supreme Court’s five-member panel ruled unanimously that Sharif should be disqualified, enacting little-used Article 62 of the constitution which allows dismissal of any lawmaker found to be dishonest.

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