Pak court sentences former military ruler Musharraf to death for treason
17 December 2019
A Pakistani court on Tuesday sentenced former Pakistan President Gen Pervez Musharraf to death on charges of high treason and subverting the constitution, reports citing official sources said.
A three-member bench of a special court, headed by Peshawar High Court Chief Justice Waqar Ahmad Seth, delivered the verdict, Dawn reported.
However, Musharraf, who seized power in a 1999 coup and later ruled as president, is not in Pakistan.
“Pervez Musharraf has been found guilty of Article 6 for violation of the constitution of Pakistan,” government law officer Salman Nadeem said.
The court’s full ruling was not available but it said in a summary it had analysed complaints, records, arguments and facts in the case and had reached a majority verdict, with two of the three judges giving the decision against Musharraf.
The charges relate to Musharraf’s imposition of a state of emergency in 2007, when he was facing growing opposition to his rule.
Under the emergency, all civil liberties, human rights and democratic processes were suspended, from November 2007 to February 2008.
He resigned later in 2008, after a political party that backed him fared poorly in a general election, and he has spent much of the time since then abroad.
Facing impeachment following the 2008 elections, he went into a self-imposed exile to Dubai and returned in 2013, but he was unable to stand for elections.
In January 2014, Musharraf suffered a “severe heart attack” on his way to a special court to face the high treason charges, following which he was admitted to an army hospital.
The high-profile cases against him left him unable to travel out of the country till the ban was lifted in March 2016.
Last month, Musharraf issued a video recording from a hospital bed in Dubai in which he said he was not being given a fair hearing in the case that was filed by the government in 2013.
“I served the nation and made decisions for the betterment of the country,” Musharraf said in the video clip.
Legal experts in Islamabad said Musharraf can challenge the order in the High Court.