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Musharraf to launch political party on October one

Last Updated: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 - 20:15

Hong Kong: Former Pakistani president Pervez
Musharraf today said he would launch a new party on October 1,
as the retired general plots a return to the frontlines of the
country`s turbulent politics.

Musharraf also accused Afghan President Hamid Karzai of
lacking "legitimacy" but urged the West to stay the course
against the Taliban and not to abandon the restive region.

"I`m going to declare a party on October 1... We have to
bring about a new political culture in Pakistan," he told
reporters in Hong Kong after addressing an annual investors`
forum organised by the CLSA brokerage.

The 67-year-old Musharraf, who lives in self-imposed
exile in London, shrugged off the threat of possible legal
action arising from his years of military rule of Pakistan.

"There are elements opposed to me, political elements,
and they are the ones who engineer these cases. One has to
face that. I`m very confident nothing can happen (on his
eventual return home)," he said.

Musharraf, who plans to stand for parliament at the next
general election in 2013, did not say where he would launch
his new party -- called the All Pakistan Muslim League.

But reports in Pakistan have said the October 1 event
will take place in London.

In a BBC interview last week, Musharraf vowed to restore
the battered country`s self-confidence and said he thought he
could become president again.

As army chief, Musharraf ousted civilian prime minister
Nawaz Sharif in a bloodless coup in 1999. He was president
from 2001 and has lived abroad since resigning in 2008.

Pakistan is back under civilian rule but President Asif
Ali Zardari, the widower of assassinated former prime minister
Benazir Bhutto is under siege from rampant militants, a weak
economy and catastrophic floods.


First Published: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 - 20:15

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