A Pakistani blogger who went missing earlier this year has applied for asylum in Britain after alleging he was tortured by a “state intelligence agency” during his disappearance.
Aasim Saeed was one of a group of five liberal social media activists who were abducted in Pakistan in January 2017 before being released after several weeks. The Pakistani military has repeatedly denied any involvement in the case.
Mr Saeed told the BBC that prior to his abduction he had been involved in running a Facebook page critical of Pakistan’s military establishment, called Mochi, “because since the inception of Pakistan they’ve always been ruling us directly or indirectly”.
Pakistan has been ruled by the military for nearly half of its 70 years. Mr Saeed was working in Singapore but visiting Pakistan for his brother’s wedding in January 2017 when he says a number of men in plain clothes arrived at his house and ordered him into a car.
Saeed told the BBC he had been ordered to hand over the passwords to his email accounts and mobile phone before being taken to a secret detention facility where he was held alongside men he believed to be “religious terrorists.”