Hundreds of former Pakistan ruling party members detained, they say

Maryam Nawaz tweeted a photo of her hugging her distraught daughter and son before leaving for her flight, with the caption: "Goodbyes are hard, even for the grown-ups".

"My children have been wrongly convicted; I won't let them go to jail; however, if they are sent to prison, I will go with them", she said. They would be kept at Adiala jail for 1 day and then would be transferred to Attock Fort.

Authorities have mobilized more than 10,000 police officers for their arrival and blocked roads with shipping containers to shut down the city of Lahore. According to sources, the Cabinet Division has allocated two helicopters - reserved for the prime minister - to the NAB to shift Sharif and his daughter to jail from the airport. Supporters of Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party say they will march to the airport there, where the former prime minister is due to land, in defiance of a ban on all public rallies.

A Pakistani accountability court on Friday sentenced Sharif in absentia to 10 years in prison for corrupt practices linked to his family's purchase of upscale London flats.

The former prime minister and his daughter were in London, where Sharif's wife Begum Kulsoom is undergoing treatment for cancer. Police have virtually put Lahore on lockdown as scores of Sharif's supporters clashed with police in the evening.

In a video taken aboard his flight to Abu Dhabi from London, former Pakistan prime minister Nawaz Sharif said that he will be taken to the jail straight from the airport and that he was doing it for the people of Pakistan. As per ANI, the PML (N) president said, "We thought Bangladesh is a baggage and it slipped off our hands".

The anti-graft body - National Accountability Bureau (NAB) - chairman Javed Iqbal has ordered taking all necessary measures to arrest Sharif and Maryam upon their arrival at the airport. "The Election Commission of Pakistan must act and order release of our detained workers".

Sharif, has been one of the country's leading politicians for most of the past 30 years.

Speaking on the bad state of Pakistan's economy, he said our economy is on the verge of decline, the stock exchange is going down, our reserves can support only one month's import now, our investors went back to London and Dubai wondering what would happen on 25 July in Pakistan.

  • Rogelio Becker