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Monday, 28 December 2009

Latest Comment from PM Gordon Brown on Akmal Shaikh

On the case of Akmal Shaikh, a Downing Street spokesman said:

"The British Government has been doing and will continue to do everything within its power to secure a fair trial and clemency on the death penalty for Akmal Shaikh. The Prime Minister has intervened personally on a number of occasions: he has raised the case with Premier Wen, most recently at the Copenhagen summit; and has written several times to President Hu. At every level - including at Ministerial level today, in a phone call from FCO Minister Ivan Lewis to his Chinese counterpart - the Government has raised its concerns, made clear our opposition to the death penalty, and requested a full mental health assessment. We will remain engaged in the coming hours".

The death penalty is due for this individual within less than 12 hours now. His relations, who have flown to China to plead on his behalf, have informed him of the penalty (reportedly he had no knowledge that he had been awarded an execution by the Chinese authorities).

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