UK diplomat`s meetings in Pak spark speculation of Mush deal
Last Updated: Wednesday, August 12, 2009, 15:39
Islamabad: Contacts between top Pakistani leaders and a British diplomat, who was previously involved in back-channel parleys to resolve political issues here, have triggered speculation that the UK is engaged in efforts to ward off the possible trial of ex-President Pervez Musharraf on charges of treason.

Mark Lyall Grant, a former High Commissioner to Pakistan who is currently Director General for political affairs in the British Foreign Office, called on President Asif Ali Zardari yesterday and met main opposition PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif in Lahore this afternoon.

An official statement issued after Grant's meeting with Zardari said they had discussed matters regarding bilateral relations but sources told that the fate of Musharraf was high on the agenda of the British diplomat, who speaks Urdu fluently and is considered an old Pakistan hand.

The sources said the possibility of Musharraf being tried for treason also figured in Grant's parleys with Sharif as the PML-N has been pushing for the former military ruler to be held accountable since Pakistan's Supreme Court ruled last month that the emergency imposed by him in November 2007 was illegal and unconstitutional.

The apex court's verdict has raised the possibility of Musharraf being tried for treason. However, such a trial can be initiated only by the government.

Bureau Report

First Published: Wednesday, August 12, 2009, 15:39

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