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The fact-finding team investigating the murder of Pakistani journalist Arshad Sharif in its report has concluded that his killing was a “planned assassination” by transnational individuals and not a case of “mistaken identity”. The Pakistani senior journalist was shot dead on October 23 as he was chased by the Kenyan police. 

The committee’s 592-page report questioned two aspects — the Kenyan police and statements by Sharif’s hosts Waqar and Khurram.

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Firstly, the report claimed that statements given by Waqar indicated his links with Kenya’s National Intelligence Service (NIS) and other intelligence services. As soon as Sharif died, Waqar handed over his phone and iPad to a NIS officer rather than the police, the Express Tribune reported. 

“His linkage with national and international agencies provides a scope of possibilities of transnational characters in this case,” the report stated. 

The report suggests that transnational individuals from Pakistan, Kenya, and Dubai cannot be ruled out. 

Khurram’s statements were found contradicting to facts as no bullet marks were found on Sharif’s car seat. 

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The report also questioned the claims of “mistaken identity” by the Kenyan police as the statements by GSU police officials contradicted it. However, the committee report further acknowledged that the police did mention ‘fingernails’ taken for DNA samples but did not specify how many. 

The report said, “Keeping in view the apparent differences in the two post-mortem reports, there is no concrete evidence to establish that Arshad Sharif was tortured before the killing.”

The team also stated that Sharif was forced to leave Pakistan. 

(With inputs from agencies)

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