Pakistan: Pervez Musharraf arrested, reappears in Islamabad court


Supporters of former Pakistani military ruler Pervez Musharraf carry party flags during a pro-Musharraf rally in Quetta on April 19, 2013.

Pakistani police arrested Pervez Musharraf on Friday, a day after the former military dictator fled a courtroom to avoid being taken into custody.

The ex-general reappeared in an Islamabad court under heavy security on Friday morning. A judge ruled Musharraf should be held in custody for 48 hours before he appears in an anti-terrorism court to face charges over the illegal detention of judges in 2007.

He has been accused of “violating the constitution” by placing the judges under house arrest after sacking the chief justice during a crackdown on the judiciary, Reuters reported.

As he entered the courtroom on Friday, Musharraf reportedly told a local journalist: “I respect the law. I came to Pakistan on my own. I will face the consequences.”

Musharraf, who ruled Pakistan for almost a decade, returned to Pakistan last month after four years of self-imposed exile in London and Dubai to contest the May 11 general elections – despite the possibility of being arrested. 

But his application to run in the election was rejected by officials and he is now stuck in Pakistan fighting various legal challenges. 

His arrest and potential imprisonment is unprecedented in a country where military rulers have been untouchable.

"This is the first time in Pakistan's short history that a former military dictator is facing imprisonment," GlobalPost's Mariya Karimjee wrote from Karachi on Thursday.

"Analysts say that this is a huge step up for Pakistan's democratic ambitions, but the feeling on the ground is still a bit confused. Will this mean a greater standoff between the courts and the military?"

More from GlobalPost: Pervez Musharraf flees Pakistani court after judge orders his arrest (VIDEO)




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