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Pakistan PM to appear before anti-graft probe team

Islamabad: Pakistan’s prime minister will appear before an anti-corruption investigation commission over allegations against his family, a government minister said Sunday.

Nawaz Sharif and his children are accused of graft in an ongoing case which has gripped Pakistan and threatened to topple the prime minister after the Panama Papers leak last year linked the family to offshore businesses.

“Yes, the government has received a letter by the Joint Investigation Team in which he has been directed to appear before this committee and he will appear in front of them,” information and broadcast minister Marriyum Aurangzeb told Geo television network.

The letter, circulated on social media, is signed by the head of the JIT and asks Sharif to “appear and associate with the JIT on Thursday, June 15”.

It also asks the prime minister to “bring all relevant record”.

Pakistan’s Supreme Court in April ordered a joint investigation team of anti-corruption officials, along with the powerful Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Military Intelligence, to probe the claims and issue a report within 60 days.

Pakistani cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan, whose Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf party has spearheaded the push against Sharif, has called on the prime minister to resign until the investigation is completed.

The controversy erupted with the publication of 11.5 million secret documents from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca last year documenting the offshore dealings of many of the world’s rich and powerful.

Three of Sharif’s four children — his daughter and presumptive political heir Maryam, and his sons Hasan and Hussein — were implicated.

At the heart of the case is the legitimacy of the funds used by the Sharif family to purchase several high-end London properties via offshore companies.

The ruling PML-N party insists the wealth was acquired legally, through family businesses in Pakistan and the Gulf.

-Agence France-Presse