Pakistan investigates heroin seized in London-bound flight

Terming the reported incident "regrettable," the adviser said it was a matter of Pakistan's dignity and vowed to take the case to its logical end.

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Pakistan has started investigation into the concealment of heroin in a London-bound Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight this week, an aviation adviser said on Wednesday.

Pakistani media has earlier said that British authorities had recovered narcotics from flight PK-785 of PIA which had reached London from Islamabad on May 15.

Adviser to Prime Minister on Aviation Division Sardar Mehtab Ahmed Khan Abbasi said that an inquiry had been ordered to probe the reported incident in a transparent and impartial manner.

“It had also been decided to include experts from other relevant departments in the investigation,” Abbasi told a news conference in Islamabad.

Pakistani embassy officials in London have confirmed that the PIA plane had been thoroughly checked and its crew was held for about eight hours but the British authorities have not yet officially conveyed to Pakistan about the recovery of narcotics.

“I am extremely concerned as to why the British authorities did not officially share the incident with Pakistan,” the adviser said.

Abbasi said that three senior PIA pilots have been stopped from working following inquiry against them. He offered Britain to constitute a joint investigation team on the issue if any contraband had been found from the PIA aircraft.

He said that a high-level meeting would be convened on Thursday to look into the issue thoroughly and decide necessary action.

Pakistan’s Geo television quoted British National Crime Agency as saying that heroin “concealed in packets” seized from PIA fight was recovered in an intelligence-based operation.

Customs authorities at Islamabad airport have started an investigation into how the plane, carrying heroin, was given clearance to proceed to London.

Terming the reported incident “regrettable,” the adviser said it was a matter of Pakistan’s dignity and vowed to take the case to its logical end.

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