Musharraf in ‘protective custody’

August 23rd, 2008 - 12:13 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, Aug 23 (IANS) Former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf is under protective custody and will be allowed to move freely only after a new head of the state is elected and the judges he sacked after declaring an emergency in November 2007 are restored, an official said.”He is under protective custody but is free to meet friends and relatives,” said the official, adding this is mainly because of security reasons.

“Once the new president is elected and judges are restored Musharraf will be allowed to leave the country,” he said.

According to sources, Musharraf, who resigned Monday, wanted to visit the US but was stopped by the authorities. “It has been conveyed to him that he will allowed (to travel) after three-four weeks after the election of the president,” said the source.

The presidential election, which was scheduled for Sept 17, has been brought forward to Sept 6.

“Some officials are suggesting Saudi Arabia as Musharraf’s destination because of security reasons. There are suggestions that he would be sent to the kingdom, where he will stay for at least six months before leaving for any other country,” said another official.

The official said that Musharraf would not be allowed to shift into his five-acre farmhouse in Islamabad that is under construction for the last three years. Musharraf had bought the property, valued at $5 million, after he seized power in 1999.

The 11-bedroom house has a fish farm, a tennis court, a swimming pool and other modern facilities for “healthy living,” a worker at farm house told IANS.

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