Bhutto murder anniversary marked

2012-12-27 11:46
Supporters of the ruling PPP offer prayers for former premier Benazir Bhutto at the site where Benazir was assassinated. (Aamir Qureshi, AFP)

Supporters of the ruling PPP offer prayers for former premier Benazir Bhutto at the site where Benazir was assassinated. (Aamir Qureshi, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Larkana - Pakistan marks the fifth anniversary of the assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto on Thursday, with her son expected to launch his political career with a speech in the family's ancestral home town.

Bhutto, twice elected prime minister, was killed in a gun and suicide attack after an election rally in Rawalpindi, the headquarters of Pakistan's army, on 27 December 2007. No one has ever been convicted of her murder.

Thousands are expected to gather at the family mausoleum at Larkana in the southern province of Sindh and Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the son of Benazir and of President Asif Ali Zardari, is to make his first major public speech.

The Bhutto family has been a force in Pakistani politics for almost all of the country's 65-year history.

Benazir's father Zulfikar Ali Bhutto led the country from 1971 until he was ousted in a military coup in 1977. He was hanged in 1979 after being convicted of authorising the murder of a political opponent.

With a general election due in the spring, analysts say the ruling Pakistan People's Party (PPP) is eager to introduce a third generation of the dynasty to the public.

Symbolism

"It appears to be the formal launching of Bilawal Bhutto Zardari into politics," political analyst Hasan Askari said.

"Bilawal has symbolic value in the Bhutto family and Zardari would like this link to be used as symbolism in the election."

As head of state President Zardari, who came to power in elections held a month after his wife's murder, is barred from leading the PPP election campaign. He is also hugely unpopular, tainted by years of corruption allegations.

Though the 24-year-old Bilawal will be too young to stand if elections go ahead as expected in the spring – one must be 25 years or older to qualify for election - Askari said he could provide a fresh new figurehead for the PPP campaign.

The Bhuttos are an almost ever-present element in the rhetoric of PPP leaders, who frequently eulogise the party's two "martyrs" as champions of the common man's struggle against a repressive "establishment".

Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf said the country should "shun prejudices and maintain unity" to pay homage to Benazir.

Sabotage


"Let us resolve to defeat the forces of extremism and terrorism and work for the progress and prosperity of the country," he said in a statement.

Bilawal, co-chairperson of the PPP with his father, in May accused former military ruler Pervez Musharraf of "murdering" his mother by deliberately sabotaging her security.

A UN report in 2010 also said the murder could have been prevented and accused Musharraf's government of failing to protect Bhutto properly.

The Musharraf regime blamed the assassination on Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud, who denied any involvement and was killed in a US drone attack in August 2009.

There has been a surge in terror attacks in Pakistan in recent weeks. Brigadier Saad Khan, a former officer with the powerful Inter-Services Intelligence agency, warned the Taliban may continue their campaign with an attack on events marking the anniversary.

- SAPA
Read more on:    asif ali zardari  |  benazir bhutto
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Hottie of the day: Nicole Meyer!

Nicole is the cover girl for the 2014 edition of SA Swimsuit! Check out some smoking hot pics of here here.

 
 

Men24.com

11 things men don’t know about their clothes
Hilarious mortal kombat elevator prank!
This is how the Top Gear presenters spend their £55 million!
Thirty and still single? There’s hope!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 35% off books

Save up to 35% on the latest page-turners. While stocks last. Shop now!

Good Morning, Mr Mandela by Zelda la Grange

Good Morning, Mr Mandela tells the extraordinary story of how a young woman had her life, beliefs, prejudices and everything she once believed in utterly transformed by the greatest man of her time. Now R221. Pre-order now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

It may be hard to stay cool, calm and collected. Your emotions can get quite heated in the moment. You may benefit from finding a...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.