Pakistani party leader back in UK custody after hospital stay

6th June 2014, Comments 0 comments

Altaf Hussain, the exiled leader of Pakistan's MQM party, was returned to a police station in Britain for questioning on Friday after spending three days in hospital, officers said.

Hussain's arrest at his suburban home in London on Tuesday in connection with alleged money laundering sparked protests in the city of Karachi, his party's power base, and has fuelled questions about the future of the MQM's political machine.

A spokeswoman for London's Metropolitan Police said that following his arrest, 60-year-old Hussain had been allowed to attend a pre-arranged medical appointment on Tuesday.

"At the request of medical professionals, he was kept in hospital until today," the spokeswoman said.

"The release back to detention was agreed after consultation with the hospital responsible for assessing his medical condition."

Police refused to give any further details of his hospital stay.

Hussain is revered by his fiercely loyal supporters -- mainly ethnic Mohajirs who migrated from India at the time of partition, but critics accuse him of running his party as a mafia-like organisation.

© 2014 AFP

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