[JURIST] Counsel for suspended Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry [official website; JURIST news archive] of the Supreme Court of Pakistan [official website] Thursday asked the judge's former colleagues to reinstate him or else risk further destabilizing the country. Lawyer Aitzaz Ahsan added that the court's decision, expected Friday, must be clear. Several protests against Chaudhry's suspension have resulted in injuries and death. On Tuesday, a suicide bomber struck a lawyers' protest in Islamabad [JURIST report], killing at least 13 people and injuring at least 40. In May, clashes sparked by the arrival of Chaudhry at a rally [JURIST report] caused the deaths of 39 people.
The government says Chaudhry misused his influence [JURIST report] to obtain jobs and promotions for his son. Many Pakistani lawyers and opposition leaders believe Chaudhry's March suspension by Pakistan President Musharraf [official website] was an indirect bid to forestall any legal challenges if Musharraf seeks to extend his eight-year rule by another five years this fall. AP has more.