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Benazir Bhutto killed
The former Pakistani Prime Minister assassinated in a suicide attack in Rawalpindi after a political rally held at Liaqut Bagh park

Added on January 2, 2008 at 13:15 Swiss time
Today, the elections have officially been postponed from January 8 to February 18, 2008.

Added on December 28, 2007 at 18:15 Swiss time
According to a press conference by the Pakistani Ministry of Interior, Benazir Bhutto did not die from gunshots, but from a head wound she suffered after hitting her car's sunroof after the suicide bomb blast. The Interior Ministry blamed al-Qaeda and the Taliban for her death, referring to an intercepted al-Qaeda phone call.

Article added on December 27, 2007 at 16:50 Swiss time, updated at 18:35 Swiss time  
The presidential hopeful and former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was killed in Rawalpindi after a political rally held at Liaqut Bagh park on December 27, 2007. According to eye-witness reports, the suicide attacker shot her in the head and later blew himself up. Benazir Bhutto died at 6:16 p.m. local time at Rawalpindi General Hospital because of her head wounds. At least a dozen other people are said to have been killed in the attack at the rally.

On October 18, 2007, on the day she had returned from almost a decade of self-imposed exile in Dubai (since 1998), Benazir Bhutto was almost killed in a suicide attack which killed 134 people in Karachi. She blamed extremist Islamic groups for the attack, who don't won't democracy to flourish in Pakistan and who do not want a woman to lead the country. General Musharraf warned her several times that he could not insure her security. At the same time, he did not seem to much preoccupied by security measures for her. However, in a political understanding, Musharraf granted amnesty to Benazir Bhutto and all corruption charges against her were withdrawn.

Benazir Bhutto (1953 - 2007) was born in Karachi, Pakistan. She pursued her university studies in the United States. From 1969 to 1973, she attended Radcliffe College and subsequently obtained a B.A. in comparative government at Harvard, where she was elected to the Phi Beta Kappa student honor society. From 1973 to 1977, she studied philosophy, politics and economics at Lady Margaret Hall in Oxford, England. During the same time at Oxford, she finished a course in international law and diplomacy. At the end of 1976, she was elected president of the Oxford Union debating society.



Benazir Bhutto was the daughter of Pakistani Prime Minister Zulifkar Ali Bhutto (1928 - 1979), the founder of the Pakistan People's Party, Pakistani President from 1971 to 1973 and Prime Minister from 1973 to 1977. He was hanged after a political trial in 1979, inspired by General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq, who had ousted him in a military coup.

Benazir Bhutto served twice as Pakistan's Prime Minister. In the first free elections after the coup against her father, the PPP became the country's largest party. Benazir Bhutto was sworn in as prime minister of a coalition government on November 16, 1988. Following charges of corruption, for which she was never tried, President Ghulam Ishaq Khan dismissed Benazir Bhutto in 1990. She initiated an anti-corruption campaign and was re-elected in 1993. She was dismissed again in 1996 by the new president in the context of a series of corruption scandals. Then president Farooq Leghari, who dissolved the parliament, accused her of mismanagement. The Supreme Court upheld President Leghari's dismissal by a 6 to 1 ruling. According to IRNA, in her second term as prime minister, Benazir Bhutto had tried to modernize Pakistan by bringing electricity to the countryside and by building schools.

[Added on January 2, 2008 at 20:35 Swiss time: in 1998, Bhutto and Zardari were each sentenced to five years in jail and fined $8.6 million for accepting kickbacks. Benazir Bhutto was abroad at the time of her conviction and decided not to return to Pakistan, whereas Zardari finished behind bars].

Benazir had been estranged from her brother Mir Murtaza. When he returned from abroad, he leveled corruption charges against Benazir's husband Zardari. Mir Murtaza died in a gunfight involving his bodyguard and the police in Karachi.

In 1997, a re-election bid by Benazir Bhutto failed. The next government was overthrown by the military.

On December 18, 1987 Benazir Bhutto married Asif Ali Zardari in Karachi, a wealthy businessman commonly known as “Mr Ten-Percent” because of alleged extortion of 10% from businesses and industries during the PPP's reign in Pakistan. He served as minister of investment in his wife's second government. He spent about a decade in jail, without ever being convicted. Incidentally, the Bhutto-Zardari marriage was arranged by [corrected on Dec. 28, 2007:] her mother. The couple has three children.

Although Benazir Bhutto was involved in too many cases of corruption (corruption cases in Pakistan, Switzerland, Spain and Britain) and cronyism, because of her father and because of her studies in the United States and England, she was considered one of the last hopes for democracy and the rule of law in Pakistan. She was one of the favorites in the Pakistani presidential election scheduled for January 2008. Benazir Bhutto was backed by Washington and London as a possible democratic and female Muslim leader.



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Benazir Bhutto: Daughter of the East, Paperback, 2008. Order the autobiography from Amazon.com, Amazon.de or Amazon.co.uk.


Pervez Musharraf: In the Line of Fire. Memoir. Hardcover, 2006, 368 p. Order it from Amazon.com, Amazon.de or Amazon.co.uk.


Deutsch Politik Geschichte Kunst Film Musik Lebensart Reisen
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