Pakistan court extends bail for ex-prez Musharraf

A Pakistan court on April 5 extended by six days the bail granted to former president Pervez Musharraf, who faces charges of detaining judges during his time in office. The Islamabad High Court also ordered Musharraf to post bond for Rs 500,000, or just over $5,000, and to appear for his next hearing scheduled for April 18. Musharraf has also been named as a suspect in the assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto in 2007, and may face charges in connection with the murder of Baluch tribal leader Nawab Akbar Bugti in 2007.

This is the latest development in Musharraf’s continued legal troubles in Pakistan. Earlier this week the Pakistan Supreme Court delayed his treason hearing until early next week to give Musharraf’s lawyers enough time to prepare a response to the allegations.

From Jurist, April 12. Used with permission.

  1. Pakistan court issues arrest warrant for Musharraf
    A Pakistani judge on April 18 issued an arrest warrant for former president Pervez Musharraf on charges of detaining judges during his time in office. With the arrest warrant, Judge Shaukat Siddiqui also canceled the bail that was granted to Musharraf on April 12. Despite the arrest order, Musharraf escaped the court premises to his home in the suburbs of Islamabad. Musharraf’s supporters argued that he was not safe in jail in light of his opponents who may try to attack him. His counsel also claimed that the court’s denial of bail constitutes bias and discrimination against their client. On the other hand, opponents and critics such as Human Rights Watch condemned Musharraf’s actions for avoiding responsibility for his crimes. 

    From Jurist, April 18. Used with permission.

  2. Musharraf under house arrest
    Pakistan’s former president Pervez Musharraf was placed under house arrest on April 19. He appeared before a magistrate after he was arrested in his home in the suburbs of Islamabad. Musharraf escaped the court premises the day before, after an arrest warrant was issued against him on charges of detaining judges during his time in office. Musharraf will be held in custody for two days in his home and then be presented before an anti-terrorism court. His counsel stated that he will continue to appeal the decision canceling his their bail, while Musharraf called the actions against him politically motivated.

    From Jurist, April 19. Used with permission.

  3. Pakistan interim government declines to try Musharraf
    The interim government of Pakistan on April 22 refused to try former president Pervez Musharraf for treason. The interim administration, which took office one month ago, told the Pakistani Supreme Court that trying the former president is beyond its mandate because its sole purposes are to oversee the upcoming vote and maintain the status quo for the incoming government. Charges of treason must be initiated by the state and can be punishable by death. The temporary administration was formed to guide the country until the May 11 general election when a new elected administration will take office. Because of its temporary nature, the current government cannot put into motion any processes the new administration cannot reverse.

    This move will be a temporary reprieve for the former president who has been ordered to remain under house arrest until his next hearing on May 4. Following the order for arrest, Musharraf’s political party the All Pakistan Muslim League has demanded the removal of Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui from the Islamabad High Court, stating that the Justice is a political figure and affiliated with a rival political party. Earlier this month, a three-member appellate tribunal disqualified Musharraf from running in the upcoming parliamentary elections because he violated the constitution in 2007 by imposing emergency rule on the nation.

    From Jurist, April 22. Used with permission.

  4. Pakistan court denies bail for Musharraf
    Former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf was denied bail on April 24 in the case regarding the assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto. Musharraf was applying for pre-arrest interim bail, citing severe threats to his safety. Specifically, Pakistani authorities defused a car bomb near Musharraf’s house on April 23. The court, however, was not swayed by this argument and denied Musharraf’s application. Following the ruling, the court transferred the case to the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) for further investigation with the direction to arrest Musharraf. 

    From Jurist, April 25. Used with permission.

  5. Musharraf again placed under house arrest
    Pakistani court on April 26 mandated that former president Pervez Musharraf stay in the custody of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) until resumption of the case regarding the assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto. According to media sources, the 69 year-old former military ruler will be held at his Islamabad home under house-arrest until April 30 to ensure his safety in the wake of numerous and severe threats.

    From Jurist, April 26. Used with permission.