Pakistan military angered by treatment of Musharraf



AGENCIES

Published — Thursday 2 May 2013

Last update 2 May 2013 2:48 am

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s powerful army chief has suggested the military is unhappy with how authorities have treated former army chief Pervez Musharraf since his return from exile.
A Pakistani court on Tuesday imposed a lifetime ban on Musharraf from contesting elections, undermining his efforts to regain influence by winning a seat in Parliament.
The former army chief returned in March after nearly four years of self-imposed exile to contest a May 11 general election, but election officers disqualified him because of court cases pending against him.
In what newspapers described as a veiled reference to Musharraf’s legal troubles, Army Chief General Ashfaq Kayani said: “In my opinion, it is not merely retribution, but awareness and participation of the masses that can truly end this game of hide and seek between democracy and dictatorship.” Kayani, arguably the most powerful figure in Pakistan, was delivering a Martyrs’ Day speech at army headquarters. Newspapers carried his comments on front pages.
The military has ruled Pakistan for than half of its 66-year-history, through coups or from behind the scenes. It sets security and foreign policy, even when civilian governments are in power.
Current commanders have meddled less in politics, letting civilian governments take the heat for policy failures.
But Kayani has had an uneasy relationship with civilian leaders, as well as an increasingly interventionist Supreme Court, which has questioned the military’s human rights record.
The chief justice, Iftikhar Chaudhry, was embroiled in a confrontation with Musharraf, who removed him from office in 2007 after he opposed plans to extend the general’s stay in power. Chaudhry was later reinstated.
Musharraf’s has been embroiled in legal issues since his return.
He became the first former army chief to be arrested in Pakistan when police took him into custody at their headquarters last Friday, breaking an unwritten rule that the top ranks of the military are untouchable, even after they have retired.
On April 20, a court remanded the former president in custody for two weeks, a term set to expire on May 4, as judges pushed ahead with plans to put Musharraf on trial for a crackdown on the judiciary during his time in office.
On Tuesday, an anti-terrorism court in the garrison city of Rawalpindi put Musharraf on 14-day judicial remand for charges of failing to provide adequate security for former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto before her 2007 assassination.
Musharraf ousted then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in a coup in 1999. Sharif is seen as the front-runner in the election.

Candidate escapes bombing

An election candidate escaped unharmed yesterday in a suicide bombing in southern Pakistan which left two people wounded, police said, after the latest in a wave of attacks to hit the campaign.
The attack came in southern Shikarpur district of Sindh province, some 400 km northeast of Karachi, when Mohammad Ibrahim Jatoi, a candidate for the May 11 poll, was on the campaign trail.
“A suicide bomber on a motorcycle blew himself up near the car ofJatoi, but he was unharmed,” local police station chief Zaheer Mahesar said. Only the bomber died in the blast.
Jatoi, from the small National People’s Party, was returning from campaigning when the bomber targeted him at a toll collection point, Mahesar said, adding that two passers-by were wounded.
“We have found arms and head of the suicide bomber,” he said.
District police chief Ghulam Azfar confirmed the suicide attack and said that up to six kilos of explosives were used in the device.
While suicide attacks are a common tactic used by Taleban and other militants in northwest Pakistan, they are rarely seen in the south.
Violence has spiked in the nuclear-armed country ahead of national elections on May 11, with at least 61 people killed in attacks on politicians and political parties since April 11.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: The Saudi led-coalition fighting to reinstate Yemen’s exiled government aims first to set it up in Aden and then return it to Sanaa if possible via peace talks with Houthi foes, a coalition spokesman said.But if the Iranian-allied Houthis did...
RIYADH: Nine Omani Umrah pilgrims, on their way back home, were killed and 34 were injured, in a road accident which took place near Khurais, between Riyadh and Al-Ahsa province.According to police, the coach carrying the pilgrims collided with a tra...
JEDDAH: The Kingdom and Namibia have signed a protocol to establish diplomatic relations between them.According to SPA, the protocol was signed on Tuesday by Saudi Arabia’s Permanent Representative at the United Nations Abdullah Al-Mouallimi and his...
JEDDAH: Official reports reveal nationalization levels of medical and health workers in the Kingdom remain low, with Saudi nationals making up only 21.7 percent of physicians, 31.8 percent of nurses, and 67.4 percent of ancillary staff.According to t...
JEDDAH: The Saudi Food and Drugs Authority (SFDA) will begin receiving clearance applications for medicines and medical supplies, including drugs containing narcotic or psychotropic substances, for Haj missions or other government bodies on Saturday....
JEDDAH: Saudi importers of cattle said the Haj season this year will not see an increase in the price of livestock due to the stability of the local market and the available supply.There are also guarantees from exporting countries that required quan...
JEDDAH: At the upcoming elections the national identity card will be the only approved document used for identifying voters of both genders and allowing voters to exercise their electoral right, provided all statutory requirements are met.In a press...
JEDDAH: Education Minister Azzam Al-Dakhil has spoken of a new education policy which emphasizes the importance of harmonizing admission policies in universities with the needs of the labor market.Al-Dakhil made these remarks during a meeting with un...
JEDDAH: Local bottled water consumption during the summer, Umrah and Haj seasons this year will increase by 10 percent.“This translates into an annual growth rate of between 4 percent and 5 percent,” Rashed Bin-Zouma, a water industry expert, was qu...
RIYADH: Four Saudi secondary students including a young woman from the Eastern Province have received prestigious medals at the 47th International Chemistry Olympiad (IChO), which concluded in Azerbaijan last week.The winners of the four bronze medal...
JEDDAH: The UAE’s decision to lift fuel subsidies beginning in August has raised the possibility of other Gulf states following suit.Economists suggest a wide disparity of prices of gasoline in the Gulf countries will lead to more petrol smuggling op...
DAMMAM: The tourism industry in the Kingdom is witnessing great interest by authorities to develop the archaeological areas, promote their support services and create the best environment for tourism products, said businessman Abdul Mohsen Al-Hokair....
JEDDAH: The ongoing World Circus at north Obhur has brought smiles on the faces of orphans, with its show of acrobats featuring 20 performers and clowns.The orphans of Al-Rawdah district charitable organization said they found the circus entertaining...
RIYADH: The Nepalese ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Udayaraj Pandey, thanked the Kingdom on Thursday as he ends his four-year tour of duty in Saudi Arabia.Earlier in the day, he called on Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar to pay him a courtesy call a...
RIYADH: Movies produced by young and amateur Saudi filmmakers will be shown on Saudi Television starting in the middle of next week.“The films will be shown daily to encourage young Saudi filmmakers,” said Abdulaziz Fahad Al-Eid, senior broadcaster a...

Stay Connected

Facebook