Lack of army support did Musharraf in

August 19th, 2008 - 2:09 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, Aug 19 (IANS) The lack of support from the Pakistani Army proved to be the last straw for Pervez Musharraf and prompted him to step down as president, a media report said Tuesday.”The final push for Musharraf came from the army top brass which was sucked into this controversy by the outgoing dictator himself primarily to save his skin from a sure impeachment,” The News said quoting sources.

The article was headlined “The last punch”.

According to the newspaper, the “undisclosed, complicated rounds of talks” between Musharraf, Asif Ali Zardari of the Pakistan Peoples Party, the army brass and “some foreign friends” continued for about two weeks culminating in a situation where army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kiyani made it clear to Musharraf that the army would not interfere in the political process even if he was impeached.

“You will have to go now,” was the message that trickled through following the parleys.

Musharraf, in return for ironclad guarantees to resign Aug 18, wanted guarantees that he would not be tried under any charges and would be given indemnity.

These guarantees were provided to him, The News quoted its sources as saying.

Musharraf’s resignation, its procedure and its timing were finalised between the nights of Aug 16 and 17. According to the deal, which sources claimed was just an “understanding”, Musharraf will continue to stay in the Army House in Rawalpindi for a month or so.

During this period, he will be provided tight security by the army and only a select group of people will be allowed to meet him. In his highly protected abode, Musharraf will prefer to stay away from the media and would not issue any statement.

“Once this phase is over, he would move to a foreign country. In addition to the army’s guarantees, the emissaries of a friendly Muslim country have also been busy these days in finalising the understanding,” The News said.

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