Former Pakistan president Musharraf arrested over 2007 Red Mosque killings

[JURIST] Former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] was arrested on Thursday for charges relating to the death of radical cleric Abdul Rashid Ghazi who died during an operation ordered by Musharraf on Islamabad's Red Mosque, which left more than 100 dead. Musharraf, however, alleges that the arrest [BBC report] was politically motivated. He has been on house arrest for nearly six months for his alleged role in the 2007 death of Pakistani politician Benazir Bhutto, the death of a Baluch separatist leader killed by the army, and the detention of Pakistani judges. The arrest came just one day after a Pakistani court granted Musharraf bail [Reuters report] in one of the three cases and was already been given bail in the other two cases. He will be presented before a court on Friday.

Musharraf has faced a slew of legal troubles. In August the Pakistani interim government declined [JURIST report] to try Musharraf for treason because they claimed such action would be outside the scope of their duties. Also that month a Pakistani court officially charged [JURIST report] Musharraf with murder, conspiracy to commit murder and facilitation of murder in the 2007 death of Bhutto. In April a Pakistan court extended [JURIST report] Musharraf's bail on charges of illegally detaining judges. That same month, the Peshawar High Court of Pakistan both banned [JURIST report] Musharraf from running for public office for the rest of his life and extended his house arrest during the ongoing trial regarding the murder of Bhutto. In March Human Rights Watch urged [JURIST report] Pakistan to hold Musharraf accountable for alleged human rights abuses upon his return to the country. Msuharraf left Pakistan in 2008 to live in self-imposed exile in Dubai and London after he was defeated by Benazir Bhutto's party.

 

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