PAKISTAN: COURT OVERTURNS DEATH PENALTY FOR EX-PRESIDENT
|Former President Pervez Musharraf
January 14, 2020:
A Pakistani court on 13 January 2020 overturned the death sentence given to the country's ex-military ruler, Pervez Musharraf. (Sources: AP, 13/01/2020)
The Lahore High Court ruled that the special tribunal formed to try the ex-president was not legal. Musharraf's defense team had petitioned the high court following the tribunal's conviction last December that the former army general was guilty of imposing emergency laws in violation of the constitution during his rule.
Musharraf seized power in 1999 when he ousted the elected government of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in a military coup. Eight years later, he imposed emergency rule and placed several key judges under house arrest. The move drew nationwide condemnation and protests that led to his resignation in 2008.
“The death sentence given to Pervez Musharraf stands quashed after today's court order," Pakistani prosecutor Ishtiaq Khan told reporters.
Musharraf's lawyer Azhar Sadique hailed the court's verdict, but said “let us see how government reacts." He claimed that Musharraf was a political target and had been falsely charged with treason by the government in 2014 after former premier Sharif returned to power.