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We are committed to finding facts about Bhutto's killing: Musharraf
Rezaul H Laskar in Islamabad | January 08, 2008 18:25 IST
During a meeting with investigators from Britain's Scotland Yard, Musharraf assured them that they would be extended full cooperation by all Pakistani investigating agencies.
Musharraf hoped that the technical and forensic expertise of the Scotland Yard would supplement the efforts of their Pakistani counterparts. The government is committed to finding the facts and unearthing the evidence so that those responsible for killing Bhutto can be brought to justice, he said.
The five-member team from the Metropolitan Police's Counter-Terrorism Command, which arrived in Pakistan on Friday, met Musharraf at his camp office in Rawalpindi. The team was accompanied by Britain's High Commissioner Robert Brinkley.
Musharraf also thanked the British government for its prompt response to Pakistan's request for assistance to probe the assassination.
The British investigators said they were thoroughly investigating the evidence to ascertain the facts regarding the incident. They appreciated the assistance and cooperation extended to them by Pakistani agencies.
Bhutto died after being attacked by a gunman and a suicide bomber while leaving the venue of an election rally in Rawalpindi on December 27.
The Interior Ministry initially said Bhutto died of a skull fracture sustained during the suicide attack, but her Pakistan People's Party angrily dismissed the contention as a lie. Musharraf subsequently admitted that Bhutto might have been shot.
The Scotland Yard team has examined Bhutto's bomb-damaged bulletproof vehicle and reconstructed the attack on her outside the historic Liaquat Bagh ground in Rawalpindi.
The team has questioned eyewitnesses, doctors who treated Bhutto and others who were injured in the suicide attack, including policemen. It also examined the body parts of other victims in a mortuary in Rawalpindi on Monday.
The British High Commission has refused to comment on the probe by the Scotland Yard team. Journalists have also been barred from interacting with the British investigators by Pakistani security agencies.
Musharraf has said that he decided to call in the Scotland Yard team to make up for the shortcomings in forensic and technical expertise of Pakistani investigators. He also said that the team will not be allowed to probe allegations made by Bhutto, in letters and e-mails, about threats to her life from certain officials and political leaders.
The PPP has alleged that the British team is working with its 'hands tied' and demanded a United Nations-led inquiry into Bhutto's killing to trace the 'sponsors, financiers and perpetrators'.