One Saudi phone call will silence Musharraf trial seekers

Saudis come to Musharraf’s rescue

* King Abdullah calls on Pakistani leadership to abide by agreement
* Any step against former president could affect Pak-Saudi ties, political stability in Pakistan

Daily Times Monitor

LAHORE: The Saudi authorities have formally sent a message to the Pakistani leadership that they want stability in Pakistan, with King Abdullah urging all stakeholders to abide by an agreement that rules out any action against former president Pervez Musharraf, reported a private TV channel on Tuesday.

Saudi royal family sources said that during a meeting between Interior Minister Rehman Malik and the Saudi king, a “clear message” was given to the government that a confrontation between the PPP and the PML-N and any step against Musharraf could affect the country’s political stability.

The channel reported that the Saudi king played the role of a guarantor at the time of Musharraf’s resignation and assured the former president that no action would be taken against him. The king said if a party or an individual backed out of the agreement reached, Pak-Saudi relations would be affected.

Nawaz travels to Saudi Arabia next week to hold meetings with officials, who would “force him to abide by the agreement”, said the sources, adding that the Saudi king wanted to defuse the tensions because he had been told Musharraf was considering making important disclosures about Nawaz and President Asif Ali Zardari in London that included talk of Saudi Arabia as well.

Musharraf – who is currently in Saudi Arabia – met the Saudi intelligence chief, who was an important player in Nawaz’s return to Pakistan, and discussed issues related to his trial.

One Saudi phone call will silence Musharraf trial seekers: Mushahid

LAHORE: Everyone will stop talking of Gen (r) Pervez Musharraf’s trial after receiving one phone call from Saudi Arabia, because the former president left Pakistan after striking a deal with the present government, Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) Secretary General Mushahid Hussain Sayed said on Tuesday. Speaking in a talk show on a private TV channel, Mushahid said he was against the former president’s trial, adding that the trial was not possible. He said the army was not involved in the present crisis. The present system had no problem from the army or the Inter-Services Intelligence or any so-called secret agencies, he said. He said the leadership should have the courage to make decisions on their own and not wait for calls from British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs David Miliband or US Special Representative Richard Holbrooke. Pakistan could not afford midterm elections or long marches against the democratic government, the PML-Q leader said. daily times monitor

PML (N) Confused

Nation to demand mid-term polls if Musharraf not tried: Zafar

ISLAMABAD: The nation will demand mid-term elections if the federal government does not try former president Pervez Musharraf under Article 6 of the constitution, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Senator Zafar Ali Shah said on Tuesday. Shah criticised the government for not taking action against the former president for abrogating the constitution. He said he would again submit a petition seeking a Supreme Court ruling for the government to initiate criminal proceedings against Musharraf for high treason. Shah said he had prepared the petition after removing the SC objections. To a question, he said he had filed the petition in his personal capacity and his party has nothing to do with it. staff report

PML-N will not support mid-term polls: Hashmi

LAHORE: The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz accepts and gives due respect to the mandate of President Asif Zardari and the Pakistan People’s Party and rules out any possibility of mid-term elections, party Senior Vice President Javed Hashmi said on Tuesday. Talking to a private TV channel, Hashmi said Syed Zafar Ali Shah had his personal views over mid-term polls. “We will not support any move for mid-term elections and our party has always given due respect to President Zardari and his party’s mandate,” he added. Hashmi also termed the minus-one formula “the approach of a sick mind”. daily times monitor

‘N’ media team constituted to tackle ‘smear campaign’

* Committee consists of Ahsan Iqbal, Saad Rafiq, Khawaja Asif, Pervez Rashid
* Ahsan says PPP involvement will be exposed soon

LAHORE: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif has constituted a four-member media team to counter the recent ‘smear campaign’ against the party leadership, Dunya TV reported on Tuesday.

Addressing a party meeting in Raiwind, the PML-N chief announced that the four-member committee would consist of Ahsan Iqbal, Saad Rafiq, Khawaja Asif and Pervez Rashid.

He ordered the committee to counter the allegations levelled against the party leadership in “a tit-for-tat manner”. He said his party would not tolerate any propaganda against its leadership, adding that he would not be a part of any campaign or effort aimed at sabotaging the democratic process in the country.

PPP involvement: PML-N Information Secretary Ahsan Iqbal said the evidence of the involvement of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) in character assassination campaign against their leader would soon be produced.

The information secretary told reporters that the PML-N said the smear campaign against his party chief would not be tolerated.

Ahsan said his party wanted to work in accordance with the Charter of Democracy (CoD), adding that “a group” in the PPP “did not care about the CoD”.

He said the PML-N believed in positive politics and welcomed the PPP’s stance on reconciliation. However, if the campaign against the PML-N was not stopped immediately, the PML-N would have to defend itself. daily times monitor/online

We are least bothered: Babar

LAHORE: The president’s spokesman Farhatullah Babar said on Tuesday the Pakistan People’s Party-led government is least bothered whether the PML-N forms a four-member or a 40-member media team to counter the alleged “propaganda campaign” against its leadership, a private TV channel reported. Talking to the channel, Babar said the PPP was a political party and would reply to the PML-N in a democratic manner. He said the party was not running any media cell in the Presidency to malign the PML-N leadership, adding that the PML-N should present evidence if it had any in this regard. Farhatullah Babar said that if the PML-N had any differences with the PPP, they could be resolved through dialogue. daily times monitor

Treat traitors like traitors: Musharraf

LAHORE: Traitors should be treated like traitors, former president Pervez Musharraf said on Tuesday. According to a private television channel, Musharraf said Pakistan’s economy received a boost during his regime and the country’s image was much better. He did not comment on his trial and return to Pakistan. He also attended a dinner hosted by Chaudhry Shahbaz in Riyadh. daily times monitor