ISLAMABAD: President Pervez Musharraf has ruled out a United Nations (UN) investigation into the assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto. A UN-led investigation was impossible as there was no evidence of a third country being involved in the PPP leader Benazir Bhutto’s assassination, Musharrf said in an interview with French newspaper Le Figaro, published on Saturday.
Benazir Bhutto’s family and her party PPP have demanded the government for a UN led probe into Ms Bhutto’s killing saying that they did not trust an investigation led by the government. President Musharraf insisted that the country had the proper institutions to probe the attack. He said that investigators from Scotland Yard were also assisting local officers in the investigation and hoped they would deliver their report into the killing before parliamentary elections in February.
Previously, the UN formed a commission to probe the killing of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri over suspicions that neighbouring Syria was involved in the attempt on his life. In the interview, Musharraf stated that the two incidents were different and hence a UN-backed probe was not appropriate.
He said that he had no doubt that extremists linked to al-Qaeda were trying to destablise the country. The President admitted that the attacks had caused disorder in the country but rejected that it was on the verge of disintegration. He emphasised it was necessary to hold elections on time to prevent the terrorists from achieving their goals. “Elections will be held whatever happens. We have to defeat the terrorists’ campaign aimed at derailing the democratic and economic process,” he said.
Musharraf said he would quit if he really believed that he no longer had the support of most Pakistanis, and said that reports of his unpopularity were untrue. “I know very well what is the support, I have from the masses, the elite and the army. The day I think that I am genuinely unpopular, I will be the first to resign,” he told Le Figaro.-SANA