02/06/2009, 00.00
PAKISTAN
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Minorities minister in favour of UN commission on Bhutto’s assassination

by Qaiser Felix
Shahbaz Bhatti, a Catholic, says the country is duty-bound to find organisers and perpetrators of the assassination of the former Pakistani prime minister. UN commission will have three members. Last year the Pakistan People’s Party rejected the conclusions reached by a team of experts sent by Scotland Yard.
Islamabad (AsiaNews) – Shahbaz Bhatti, federal minister of Minorities Affairs and chairman of the All Pakistan Minorities Alliance (APMA), has welcomed the announcement that a UN commission will soon start investigating Benazir Bhutto’s murder.

Bhatti called the decision a duty towards someone of Benazir Bhutto’s calibre. Her assassins must be brought to justice.

He noted that the commission is the result of Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari’s efforts to expose organisers and perpetrators.

Ms Bhutto, who twice served as Pakistan’s prime minister, was assassinated on 27 December 2007 in Rawalpindi during an election rally.

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Wednesday announced the establishment of an independent commission during a dinner reception hosted by President Zardari.

Pakistan’s state-run APP news agency reported that Chile’s UN Ambassador Heraldo Muñoz would head the three-member commission. Indonesia’s Marzuki Dar Usman will be a member of the commission, but no decision has been made on the third member.

Last year the government of President Pervez Musharraf invited a team of British detectives to probe into the murder of Ms Bhutto. The Scotland Yard detectives concluded that Ms Bhutto, who stood through the sunroof of a truck, did not die from gunshot wounds but from the force of a suicide bomb blast which hurled her against the vehicle’s roof.

Ms Bhutto’s Pakistan Peoples Party immediately rejected the Scotland Yard report and called for a UN probe into the assassination.

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