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Retrial ordered for Bhutto

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    Retrial ordered for Bhutto

    does this mean return of bhutto in pakistano politics. what is idea behind court's verdict?

    Retrial ordered for Bhutto

    Mrs Bhutto is living in self-imposed exile

    A court in Pakistan has ordered a retrial of the former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and her husband, Asif Zardari, suspending an earlier conviction and jail sentence on corruption charges.
    Both had been sentenced to five years in prison by a special court two years ago, but the Supreme Court, which had been hearing an appeal for more than five weeks, struck down the conviction.

    This shows that our judiciary is free and independent

    Farooq Naik, lawyer for Ms Bhutto
    The ruling - which may have a significant impact on the country's political scene - could pave the way for Ms Bhutto to return to Pakistan without being arrested.

    But the military government says it is preparing nine new corruption charges against the former prime minister, who is living in exile.


    Ms Bhutto and her husband - who is in jail on other charges - had been found guilty of taking huge kickbacks for awarding a multi-million dollar public contract to a Swiss firm.

    General Musharraf is said to be preparing new corruption charges

    During the appeal, lawyers argued that taped conversations between the judge and chief investigator had shown that the then government of Nawaz Sharif had tried to influence the trial.

    It is not clear whether the Supreme Court based their decision to order a retrial on this argument.

    "We accept the titled appeal, set aside judgment and ordered a retrial of the case by a competent court," Supreme Court Judge Bashir Jehangiri said.

    Judicial review?

    Ms Bhutto's supporters were jubilant about the decision, but her lawyer told reporters he had been expecting an acquittal.

    Reports from Islamabad quoting legal sources say General Musharraf's has no right of appeal against the Supreme Court's judgement, but could seek a judicial review of the ruling.

    Ms Bhutto, who has maintained her innocence throughout, said the charges against her were drummed up by her arch rival Mr Sharif.

    She has been living in the United Arab Emirates and Britain, refusing to return home while her conviction was under appeal.

    Hostility to Bhutto role

    Her Pakistan People's Party (PPP) said they were holding an emergency meeting and the party executive would decide on her future.

    [Sharif and Bhutto] have failed the nation, so they have no role to play in Pakistan's politics

    General Musharraf
    Ms Bhutto's government was dismissed in 1996. It was succeeded by the government of Mr Sharif, which was overthrown by the army in 1999.

    Military leader Pervez Musharraf, in an interview with a monthly news magazine, Herald, said there was no role for Ms Bhutto in Pakistani politics, nor for exiled ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif.

    Mr Sharif was jailed

    Extradite that ^*&&^**
    The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he did not exist. And like that... he is gone.