Islamabad, February 5
After news about the demise of Pakistan’s former president General Pervez Musharraf was confirmed, the country’s Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Sunday changed his Twitter profile picture to a photograph of his mother Benazir Bhutto and the late Nawab Akbar Bugti, in whose murder the former military ruler was named.
Bilawal, who is chairman of the Pakistan Peoples Party which was once led by Benazir Bhutto, also posted four pictures of his mother with a caption “Tu zinda rahygi Benazir” (You will live, Benazir).
There was no formal message of condolences from the foreign minister.
His sister Aseefa Bhutto Zardari posted the same pictures with the same caption. One of the pictures carries a short poem seeking justice for Benazir.
Benazir was killed in a gun-grenade attack during an election rally in Rawalpindi in December 2007.
She had asked Musharraf for greater security, including tinted windows, jammers, private guards, and additional police vehicles. However, President Musharraf denied more security.
Nawab Akbar Bugti, the former junior interior minister and Governor of Balochistan, and over two dozen of his tribesmen were killed during a military operation launched on the orders of Musharraf in 2006, leading to widespread unrest in the area and a surge in the Baloch nationalist sentiment in the troubled province.
When Musharraf returned to Pakistan in March 2013 to contest polls after living in self-exile for about five years he was hauled to court in different cases - including the 2007 assassination of Benazir Bhutto and murder of Nawab Akbar Bugti.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, whose elder brother Nawaz Sharif was toppled by Musharraf in a bloodless coup in 1999, however, offered condolences to the former president’s family and prayed for the “forgiveness of the deceased.” After his ouster, Nawaz Sharif was sentenced to life by a court during Musharraf’s regime. Later, Sharifs were exiled to Saudi Arabia on the intervention of the Gulf Kingdom.
Musharraf, the architect of the Kargil War in 1999, died on Sunday in Dubai after a prolonged illness.
The 79-year-old former military ruler, who had been in the UAE since 2016, was undergoing treatment for amyloidosis at American Hospital Dubai.
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