Musharraf says pol elements conspiring against his return

Former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf said that he is not daunted and would return to frontline of his country`s active politics with the launch of his new party on October 1.

Updated: Sep 15, 2010, 21:11 PM IST

Hong Kong/Islamabad: Charging that
"political elements" were conspiring against him, former
Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf today said that he is not
daunted and would return to frontline of his country`s active
politics with the launch of his new party on October 1.

"There are political elements in Pakistan who are
opposing my return. My answer to them would come on October 1
when I`m going to declare my new party," Pakistan`s former
military ruler told reporters here on the sidelines of an
investment summit.

In a volte-face, Musharraf urged the Western powers to
stay on course against Taliban and not to abandon Afghanistan.

According to classified documents released by the
National Security Archive of the George Washington University,
Musharraf as President of Pakistan had opposed the then Bush
administration`s call for a crackdown on Taliban post 9/11.

"The whole world is against Taliban. So why cannot we?
We can win and we will win...no one is analysing the effect of
abandoning Afghanistan and its effect on Pakistan, region and
the world," he said.

Vowing to "bring about a new political culture in
Pakistan", 67-year-old Musharraf said that he would declare
his new political party on October 1, but did not specify
where he would launch the party.

Musharraf, who lives in self-imposed exile in London,
shrugged off threat of possible legal action against him on
his return to Pakistan, arising from years of heading a
military rule in the country.

"There are sections of political elements who are
engineering these cases. I`m very confident that I can
overcome this on my eventual return home and nothing will
happen against me," Musharraf said in his comments quoted by
Pakistan`s Urdu daily Jang.

Speaking after addressing a CLSA investment seminar
here, Musharraf expressed confidence in his ability to regain
popularity and said he would stand for Pakistan`s next general
elections scheduled for 2013.

The former military strongman had to step down from
office in August 2008 after months of protests when he
dismissed the country`s top judiciary.

Acknowledging that he had lost public support after
his action against judiciary, Musharraf claimed that he had
rebuild support among the Pakistan`s youth in the age group of
18-34.

"The youth in Pakistan is yearning for a change. It is
the youth that is demoralised in the country which has to be
awakened to introduce a new political culture in Pakistan," he
added.

PTI