DEEP concern at the deten. tion, trial procedures and treatment of government opponents in Pakistan, even before the March 7 general election, is expressed in a report published this week by Amnesty International. The report is based on the findings of an Al mission which returned from Pakistan last week.
It stressed that its report was not a response to the postelection situation in the country. It said: "We sincerely hope that the government of Pakistan will review the cases of all members of the opposition, whether in detention or on trial under special legislation, and will consider the early release, at least on bail, of all those against whom no charges under 'the ordinary procedure can be brought."
Despite the statement by Pakistan's Attorney-General on October 28 last that there were only nine political prisoners in the country, Al estimated at that time that at least several thousand political prisoners were detained in various parts of Pakistan under different legal charges. Most of them were detained without trial.
During the mission, the Al delegates received some allegations of ill-treatment of prisoners, relating to incidents in 1974 and 1975, and others reached AI after the mission took place. Allegations include severe beatings and threats of execution.