Ex-Pakistani leader Pervez Musharraf slams his trial as personal vendetta after receiving death penalty
Former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf argued that he was deprived of the right to defend himself when a court sentenced him to death in absentia for high treason and subverting the constitution.
In a video message on Wednesday, Musharraf said that his death sentence came as a result of him being “targeted by high-ups misusing their authority.”
This case was taken up only due to personal vendetta by some people against me.
The former president said his trial was unlawful because “neither the defendant nor his lawyers were given permission to speak in his defense,” and the “supremacy of law was ignored” by the judges.
Musharraf was the head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee when he seized power in a bloodless coup in 1999. He later ruled as president, suspending the constitution and imposing emergency rule in 2007. A year later, Musharraf resigned following public pressure and eventually left Pakistan. He is currently undergoing medical treatment in Dubai.
Former Pakistani President & Army Chief Pervez Musharraf's first reaction on his death sentence; Says justice has been denied. pic.twitter.com/968LHeBTRW— Sidhant Sibal (@sidhant) December 18, 2019
Earlier this week, a special court in Pakistan sentenced the former president to death after finding him guilty of high treason and subverting the constitution. After the verdict, the military spoke in Musharraf’s defense, praising him for his service to the nation and saying that he “can surely never be a traitor.” The army’s press office also claimed that the court denied the defendant his right to self-defense.
Critics say Musharraf undermined democracy when he staged a coup and concentrated too much power in his own hands. Public pressure stopped him from becoming more entrenched, when he suspended the constitution for six weeks to seek re-election.