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Pakistan's Musharraf gets bail in Red Mosque case

Accused of ordering killing of cleric and 154 others

Pakistan's Musharraf gets bail in Red Mosque case

File photo shows Pervez Musharraf on his return to Karachi in March (AFP/Aamir Qureshi)

Former Pakistan military ruler Pervez Musharraf was granted bail Monday for his role in the 2007 military raid on the Red Mosque that killed 154 people including a prominent radical Islamic cleric.

The former military ruler was ordered to post two bonds of roughly US$1,000 each.

“My client was falsely implicated in the case. There is no evidence that Musharraf had ordered the raid on the Red Mosque,” Ilyas Siddiqui, Musharraf’s lawyer told reporters.

Monday’s court hearing related to the 2007 siege on Islamabad’s Red Mosque where hundreds of armed radicals had bunkered down in Islamabad’s Red Mosque before troops allegedly under Musharraf’s orders stormed the building.

Killed in the raid were Islamic cleric Abdul Rashid Ghazi and his mother, along with 154 people, including troops, seminary students and suspected militants.

Musharraf, 70, already has been granted bail and under house arrest since April for a slew of crimes, including the in the 2007 assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto, the killing of a Baluch separatist leader and the detention of several Pakistani judges.

Musharraf faced the charges since returning in March from a self-imposed exile to lead his political party in May parliamentary elections. He was disqualified and barred from taking part in the polls.

He is currently being held at his heavily-guarded farmhouse on the outskirts of Islamabad.

Musharraf took power in a 1999 coup and led the country until he stepped down in 2008 under the threat of impeachment.

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