tagged w/ Bhutto
Pakistan has pardoned 7,000 death row inmates and changed their sentences to life imprisonment to celebrate the late Benazir Bhutto's birthday.
The gesture, which constitutes one of the biggest amnesties in modern history, was approved by the Cabinet this week. According to Amnesty International, the reprieve will affect almost one third of the world's death row population, which is estimated to be around 24,000. The prisoners sentences will be changed to imprisonment for life. According to a Pakistani official, prisoners sentenced for drug offenses and terrorism charges might not be offered a pardon.
However, radical Mullahs are encouraging Muslims to protest against the amnesty, arguing that it is against Sharia law and, as such, "un-Islamic." Furthermore, Mullahs draw attention to Islamic laws according to which only relatives of murder victims can pardon the murderer. Islamic leaders have announced that a meeting of religious groups is to be held at the radical Red Mosque in Islamabad on July 6 to make a plan to protest.Pakistan has pardoned 7,000 death row inmates and changed their sentences to life... more
Pakistan's former prime minister Nawaz Sharif stepped up his attack on President Pervez Musharraf on Saturday, suggesting he could be hanged while addressing thousands of protesters outside the national parliament.
"We asked you to quit with honor after the election but you didn't," Sharif told the crowd, referring to U.S. ally Musharraf, who overthrew him in a 1999 coup.
"Now people have given a new judgment for you ... they want you to be held accountable," he said in the early hours of Saturday.
The crowd, officially estimated at up to 20,000, chanted "hang Musharraf" as it listened to the two time former prime minister's fiery speech.
"Is hanging only for politicians?" asked Sharif, referring to former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, hanged by a military dictator in 1979.
"These blood-sucking dictators must be held accountable."
The demonstration, a few hundred meters from the presidency and parliament buildings, marked the climax of an almost week-long rolling protest across the country led by lawyers, though by the end they were easily outnumbered by Sharif party activists.
Pakistan's former prime minister Nawaz Sharif stepped up his attack on President... more
Despite losing badly to the opposition parties in Pakistan's parliamentary elections yesterday, President Pervez Musharraf says he has no plans to resign. Instead he says there is a need to move forward towards bringing about a stable democratic government in his country. And he's said that he would try to work with any new government "because that is in the interest of Pakistan."
Meanwhile, there is mention that the opposition parties (Bhutto's PPP and Nawaz Sharif's PML-N) could form a coalition which would then give the newly united parties more than half of parliament's seats. If this moves forward and the coalition manages to get a two-thirds majority in parliament, they could then call for Musharraf to be impeached.
Monday's election certainly snubbed out any rumours of rigging in favour of Musharraf. Do you think that is one step in the right direction for Pakistan's democracy? Will Musharraf be able to maintain his position?Despite losing badly to the opposition parties in Pakistan's parliamentary... more
When Benazir Bhutto's replacement as party chairman turned out to be her relatively unknown son, reports turned up little beyond his age (19) and occupation (student at Oxford University). In other words, enough facts to warrant a sprint to Facebook, where millions of college students publish troves of personal information...When Benazir Bhutto's replacement as party chairman turned out to be her... more
I don't believe this is true, but I haven't seen Bhutto's body and I am not in a position to confirm or deny the existence of Pakistani owned high power laser weapons. So anything is possible really.
"Controversy surrounding the assassination intensified yesterday amid reports that crucial records had been removed from the Rawalpindi General Hospital where Bhutto was taken, and claims she was killed using laser-beam technology.
The Nation on its front page said the gunfire and bomb blasts at Bhutto's election rally "were a decoy to hide the real shooters" and claimed laser technology similar to that used by American forces in Iraq had been used.
The newspaper cited unnamed sources and said the technology was unlikely to have been available to the al-Qa'ida and Taliban jihadi leader Baitullah Mahsood, whom the Government has said orchestrated the opposition leader's death.
The report came as a doctor at the Rawalpindi General Hospital disclosed that "the Government took all the medical records after Benazir Bhutto's time of death was read out", adding that he and others had been warned not to talk publicly about the case.
There was also speculation about the whereabouts of some of Bhutto's key security personnel as she was attacked, with newspapers highlighting claims that some of her detail were nowhere in sight. "I don't believe this is true, but I haven't seen Bhutto's body and I am... more
Robert Novak: Was the president of the United States issuing Musharraf a free pass to rig next month's elections in Pakistan?
Bhutto didn't trust the White House with her report about ISI and Ijaz Shah rigging the elections. Election rigging done with US money. Her requests for security were rebuffed by the CIA and the White House. If Bush Sr. put his foot down to protect her in 1988, why didn't George W. do the same?Robert Novak: Was the president of the United States issuing Musharraf a free pass to... more
Benazir Bhutto's assassination is a sad end to a political entity that could have restored hope in a tattered country. But, she was a triumphant sort of human that was fueled by being who she was and how she wanted to live her life despite immanent danger surrounding her every move.Benazir Bhutto's assassination is a sad end to a political entity that could have... more
Huckabee proves his ignorance on matters of foreign policy:
"(CNN) - Mike Huckabee - whose foreign policy credentials have been under a microscope since he admitted to journalists that he was unaware of a major report on Iran's nuclear weapons program - appeared to make another minor gaffe Thursday when he seemed to suggest incorrectly that Pakistan was currently under martial law."
I guess Huckabee wasn't aware that martial law in Pakistan was lifted two weeks before the assassination. Maybe it's a minor miscommunication, but this is beginning to look like a pattern with Huckabee.
In fact, when confronted with the news of Bhutto's assassination, Huckabee mysteriously uses the situation to reinforce his "hard-line" illegal immigration stance by saying:
"We have more Pakistani illegals coming across our border than all of the other nationalities except those immediately south of the border. In light of what's happening in Pakistan it ought to give us pause."
Pretty crazy, right? Illegal Pakistanis are the second largest group of illegals... amazing that he knew that too, except that the statistics he was using were from a period of 4 years, not 1...
But anyway, why did Huckabee turn to illegal immigration during his statements on Bhutto's death? Ah... I think his senior aid explained it best:
"The Huckabee official told CNN that when he said that, Huckabee was trying to turn attention away from scrutiny of his foreign policy knowledge."
Huckabee proves his ignorance on matters of foreign policy: "(CNN) - Mike... more
Dramatic new videotape of the assassination of former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto emerged Sunday, showing her slumping moments after gunshots ring out.
While the tape provides the clearest view yet of the attack, it doesn't appear to answer who was behind the assassination or how Bhutto died.
Bhutto can be seen standing up through her vehicle's sunroof. After the sound of three gunshots, her headscarf flaps up on her left side and she slumps forward and slides into the car. Dramatic new videotape of the assassination of former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir... more
Following Bhutto's assassination the elections that were to take place in January are now expected to be delayed for between 6 and 12 weeks. Despite this it now looks clear that Bhutto's son Bilawal and her husband Asif Ali Zardari will take over leadership. Bilawal, being only 19 is not technically allowed to remain a political leader so his father will look after the role until he is 25.
Nawaz Sharif, the leader of the opposition, had previously sought to boycott the elections but he has now changed to his position saying he would support a delayed election if this is what the PPP decide to do.
With the Military effectively in control of a nuclear armed country, political turbulence, assassinations, and civil unrest, Pakistan is most certainly in hostile water. It is an issue which the rest of the world should be following carefully with UN doing everything in its power to ensure stability.
Can external intervention from the UN help to diffuse the problem or will it make things worse by involving other countries in an internal dispute?Following Bhutto's assassination the elections that were to take place in January... more
A Pakistani student talks about his feelings regarding Benazir Bhutto's assasination and stresses the needed for Pakistanis to stay united and committed in their struggle for democracy. A Pakistani student talks about his feelings regarding Benazir Bhutto's... more
Various reports muddy Bhutto's cause of death. Initially it was reported that Bhutto was shot in the head. Later the state run media released a report that shrapnel hit her. Latest reports suggest that she cracked her skull on part her sun roof following the blast that killed 28 others and wounded 100. Various reports muddy Bhutto's cause of death. Initially it was reported that... more
This NY Times piece gives an excellent outline of this lady's life. When I found out she was gunned down, I must say I was angry that people use violence again to get their point across. When is the world going to wake up and realize that violence only begets violence. This senseless act only make Ms Bhutto's life and works bigger.
My message for the people that think violence is the only way would be to smarten up and use the system that is in place to legally challenge whatever grievances you may have. Put your money into gathering supporters and bringing it to the courts and speaking up instead of using that money for guns, human bombs or any other type of violence. Approaching it this way will make more people see your points of views and your arguments against what you think is unfair and why you think your nation, peoples and/or families are being taken advantage of. Speak up, we want to know why. There are better ways to get your points across.
The bloodshed has to stop.
Reporting for the linked article was contributed by David E. Sanger, Jane Perlez, David Rohde and Helene Cooper.This NY Times piece gives an excellent outline of this lady's life. When I found... more
Police in Karachi fired teargas at stone-throwing crowds on Tuesday (November 13) as supporters of Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto took to the streets. Earlier in Lahore, authorities arrested Bhutto supporters outside her home, and placed her under house arrest for a week.Police in Karachi fired teargas at stone-throwing crowds on Tuesday (November 13) as... more
- The Pakistani Parliament will be dissolved on Thursday
- Musharraf has said elections will take place as planned in mid-January.
- Musharraf also said he would give up his post in the military once his reelection is confirmed by the country's supreme court.
- However, he has also said he doesn't know when emergency rule will end, opening the possibility that the elections could take place under emergency rule.
- Bhutto and the opposition parties are considering boycotting the elections.
- Bhutto says her planned protest march will proceed even though the government has banned political protests.- The Pakistani Parliament will be dissolved on Thursday - Musharraf has said... more