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Benazir faces treason charges

September 03, 2003 14:12 IST

The government of Pakistan is considering charging exiled former prime minister Benazir Bhutto with treason for disclosing state secrets, reports the Daily Times. 

'The government has taken very serious notice of Benazir Bhutto's interview to India Abroad, in which she talked about a war-plan briefing given to her when she was the prime minister,' the Daily Times quotes a senior government official as saying. The government would first put the matter to the National Assembly for a debate, he said. 

Rediff.com owns India Abroad, the widely circulated newspaper published for the Indian-American community.

'The Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs has been asked to give its opinion on this matter,' and action would be taken against the former prime minister under the provisions of the law and the Constitution, he added.   
Information Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed confirmed the government was indeed considering filing a case against the former prime minister because 'she has committed an act of treason,' the Daily Times said 

The government  will point out a violation of the oath taken by Bhutto as the country's prime minister under clauses 2 and 3 of Article 91 of the Constitution, Ahmed said.

'This is a very serious matter and Article 6 of the Constitution can be invoked against her,' he said. The oath for the prime minister reads: "I (the prime minister) will not directly or indirectly communicate or reveal to any person any matter, which shall be brought under my consideration or shall become known to me.'"


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