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Nawaz, Maryam’s flight delay fuels drama

Former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s flight has been delayed by nearly two hours at Abu Dhabi, where he had landed nearly seven hours ago for a stopover on his way to Lahore for a dramatic homecoming. Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz, sentenced to jail in Pakistan for corruption, are likely to be arrested on their arrival in Lahore this evening.

Nawaz and Maryam departed from London late Thursday and are presently in Abu Dhabi, from where they are expected to reach Lahore after 7 pm.

At Abu Dhabi, Mr Sharif and Maryam Nawaz were not allowed to meet his lawyer or the media as they waited at the first class lounge of the Etihad Airways, according to a journalist accompanying them from London.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has disclosed that it has arranged two helicopters, expected to shift the father-daughter duo to Adiala jail in Rawalpindi as soon as they land. NAB has also deployed two teams each at Lahore and Islamabad airports for this purpose.

“Whether they arrest me now or when I reach Lahore, I am ready for any eventuality. If I can leave my wife in that state and come to this point, I am coming home with a purpose. People know that” Mr Sharif was seen saying in a series of videos.

NAB Chairman Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal has warned that strict action will be taken against anyone who obstructs the arrest of the PML-N leaders. The PML-N, however, has claimed that it will only take out a peaceful rally at the airport to welcome its leader.

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