Musharraf Charged In Bhutto Assassination Case

Musharraf Charged In Bhutto Assassination Case

Musharraf Charged In Bhutto Assassination Case

Islamabad: Compounding his legal woes, Pakistani investigators  included ex-military ruler Pervez Musharraf in the list of main accused who conspired to assassinate former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto in 2007.

 The Federal Investigative Agency (FIA) submitted a chargesheet against 69-year-old Musharraf including him in the list of main accused in the case in the Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) in Rawalpindi.

 The FIA presented a four-point chargesheet against Musharraf in the ATC, accusing him of hatching a conspiracy to assassinate Bhutto.

 54-year-old Bhutto was assassinated in a suicide attack outside Rawalpindi on December 27, 2007, after she addressed an election campaign rally.

 The chargesheet submitted contained the statements of four witnesses, including an American journalist Marc Siegel, as well as Bhutto’s own statement.

FIA officials said that the chargesheet has been prepared on the basis of Marc Siegel’s statement, who had claimed that Musharraf called and threatened her when he was sitting with Benazir Bhutto.

Siegel, who served as lobbyist for Bhutto in the US, had also stated that she had told him that Musharraf would be responsible for any harm to her.

He had earlier stated that he was with Bhutto in London when Musharraf had denied the allegations.

The chargesheet stated that the statement of the American established Musharraf as the prime accused in Benazir’s murder.

The chargesheet also levelled terrorism accusations against the former president.

The document stated that Musharraf had failed to prove his innocence in the case.

The ATC last year summoned Siegel to personally appear in the court and record his statement. However, he has not yet appeared before the court.

The ATC judge Chaudhry Habib-ur-Rehman ordered that Musharraf must be produced in the court on July 2, when the court will resume hearing of the case.

In the meanwhile, Pakistan has formed a high-level committee to investigate the Emergency rule former military ruler Pervez Musharraf had imposed, Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan said Thursday.

Musharraf, who faces high treason charges for abrogating the constitution during his 1999-2008 rule, imposed Emergency rule in November 2007 and suspended the constitution, reports Xinhua.

He had also placed dozens of top judges under house arrest after they refused to take oath under his Provisional Constitutional Order.

The interior minister told the National Assembly that a four-member panel was made up of senior officials of the Federal Investigation Agency.

Nisar said the committee will keep the ministry informed about its investigation and submit its report within the shortest possible time.



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