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UN announces probe for Assassination of Benazir Bhuto

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United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon announced a commission to investigate the assassination of former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

The announcement is likely to come during Moon's visits to Islamabad on February 4. A senior diplomatic source gave this information to the media.

The three-man unit, headed by the Chilean diplomat Heraldo Mugnoz, will find themselves plunged into a murky world of conspiracy theories, power politics and conflicting agendas.

The investigation was ordered by the UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, on a request from Pakistan's civilian government led by Bhutto's widower, President Asif Zardari.

Few Pakistanis believe it has the power to uncover the truth about the country's most shocking political death since the military dictator General Zia ul-Haq perished in a mysterious plane crash 21 years ago.

Mugnoz is supported by the Indonesian official Marzuki Darusman and Peter Fitzgerald, a retired Irish police officer who headed the initial inquiry into the assassination of Lebanese premier Rafik Hariri, in 2005.

The UN team's mandate is to "establish the facts and circumstances of the assassination", according to a statement - but not to undertake a criminal investigation, which remains the responsibility of the Pakistani authorities.

Pakistan has a long history of unsolved political murders stretching back to the first Prime Minister, Liaqat Ali Khan, who was assassinated in Rawalpindi in 1951, just metres from the spot where Bhutto was killed.

Before returning to Pakistan in October 2007, Bhutto wrote to Musharraf naming a handful of powerful individuals, including a senior intelligence official, she said should be investigated in the event of her death.

Musharraf declared a state of emergency and briefly placed Bhutto under house arrest. Bhutto was highly critical of the decision to declare a state of emergency, and announced that it would be nearly impossible to maintain a working relationship with Musharraf.

On Dec. 27, 2007 at a campaign rally in Rawalpindi, a gunman shot at her and set off a suicide bomb. Bhutto was killed, either by a bullet or piece of shrapnel to the head or by hitting her head against the sunroof of her car.

By FW Editor

Tags: un, politics, assasination

Category: Others  - ( Others Archive)

Date Added: 05 March '10

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