کور / تازه خبرونه / Opposition leaders held in Pakistan

Opposition leaders held in Pakistan

Sunday, 4 November 2007 09:05
Pakistani police have arrested the acting leader of former premier Nawaz Sharif’s party today, after rounding up cricket legend Imran Khan and senior lawyers under a state of emergency.


Their arrests camPervez Musharraf Suspended the constitution e as President Pervez Musharraf suspended the constitution citing what he said were threats posed to the nation by Islamic extremism and judicial interference.


Javed Hashmi, the acting chief of Mr Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League-N party, was arrested in a raid on his house in the central city of Multan.


AdvertisementHashmi was sentenced to 23 years in prison in 2004 on treason charges for criticising the army, and freed on the orders of the Supreme Court in July.


Late yesterday, Imran Khan, who captained Pakistan to cricket World Cup success in 1992 and then turned to politics, said he was placed under house arrest.


But Mr Khan has escaped from his home in Lahore today.



Mr Khan, who heads his Movement for Justice Party, is at the forefront of an opposition campaign to dislodge Mr Musharraf, who seized power in a 1999 coup.


Khawaja Asif, a firebrand central leader of Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League, was also placed under house arrest.


Nationalist opposition leaders Mehmood Khan Achakzai and Qadir  Magsi were detained in their home towns in southern Pakistan.


The president of the Supreme Court Bar Association, Aitzaz  Ahsan, and other legal leaders including Munir A  Malik, Ali Ahmad  Kurd and Tariq Mehmood were also taken into custody immediately  after emergency rule was imposed.


The four lawyers were counsels for ousted Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry when Mr Musharraf first tried to sack him in March.


Mr Chaudhry, who has issued several rulings against Mr Musharraf’s government, was sacked but not arrested.


The police also picked up five lawyers from southwestern Quetta, who were known as staunch supporters of Mr Chaudhry.


Hundreds of police and paramilitary rangers deployed late yesterday around the Supreme Court to prevent protests by lawyers and opposition parties.

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