Pakistan government targeting Bhutto party members for arrest: PPP officials

[JURIST] Pakistani security forces have unfairly targeted members of the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) [party website], the party of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto [BBC obituary; JURIST news archive], in an effort to prevent them from participating next month in the country's postponed elections [JURIST report], PPP officials said Wednesday. Government officials denied allegations that any arrests were made based on party affiliation, but said that about 1,000 people have been arrested in Bhutto's home province on charges related to rioting in the wake of her assassination [JURIST reports]. A senior PPP member said Pakistani officials have filed charges against nearly 400,000 PPP supporters throughout the country.

Bhutto was killed December 27 at a political rally in Rawalpindi. She was campaigning in the lead-up to parliamentary elections then scheduled for January 8, where her Pakistan People's Party was challenging Pakistani Prime Minister Pervez Musharraf's Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) [party website]. The elections have since been postponed to February 18. AP has more.

 

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