Benazir may fly to Islamabad today

Published November 5, 2007

KARACHI, Nov 4: Former prime minister and Pakistan People’s Party Chairperson Benazir Bhutto held on Sunday intensive discussions with party leaders on the post-emergency situation, condemned the arrest of lawyers and political activists and called upon all political forces to launch a joint struggle against dictatorship.

Ms Bhutto is expected to travel to Islamabad on Monday where she is expected to preside over a meeting of her party’s Central Executive Committee and meet leaders of other parties. However, Bilawal House sources were not confirming her travel plan, obviously for security reasons.

Throughout the day Ms Bhutto was in contact with PPP leaders across the country amid reports that scores of activists had been arrested in Gujrat, Bahawalpur, Sargodha, Kot Momin and Lahore while forcing many others to go underground as police raided their homes.

She strongly deplored the detention of the Supreme Court Bar Association president, Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan, and PPP and democratic activists.

Ms Bhutto called for restoration of the Constitution and the holding of elections on time. She also demanded immediate release of the detained PPP activists and withdrawal of cases against them.

She also called upon the international community, human rights bodies and members of the legal fraternity to press for fair and free elections in Pakistan and end of military rule.

Meanwhile a delegation of the National Party called on the PPP chief and exchanged views with her on political situation.

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