ISLAMABAD: A spokesman for former military ruler retired Gen Pervez Musharraf has termed the government’s decision to initiate his treason trial under Article 6 “a vicious attempt to undermine the Pakistani military”.
“We not only forcefully reject these charges, but also view them as a vicious attempt to undermine the Pakistani military. It is also a botched attempt by the government to temporarily take the focus away from existential threats faced by Pakistan,” said Dr Raza Bokhari, international spokesman and North American point of contact for Gen Musharraf, in a statement.
“We view with grave suspicion the timing of the announcement by the Taliban sympathetic Nawaz government to initiate treason proceedings against former president Musharraf,” he said. Moreover, he said, it was “unfortunate” that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was “obsessed by politics of personal vendetta” and was “criminalising the lawful acts of the Musharraf government”.
He said Gen Musharraf had declared a state of emergency on Nov 3, 2007, and held in abeyance certain sections of the constitution in exercise of powers vested in him by Article 232 of the Constitution.
“He took this much needed action to reform an activist segment of the judiciary and augment security operations against extremists and terrorists who were wreaking havoc in Pakistan.”
The spokesman further said it was important to note that the former president had acted after unanimous advice of the then prime minister, governors of all the four provinces, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, chiefs of the armed forces, vice-chief of the army staff and the corps commanders of the Pakistan Army.
“It is also extremely important to remember that former president Musharraf also lifted the state of emergency on Dec 15, 2007, and fully restored the constitution,” he added.