Pakistan Supreme Court considers Musharraf treason case

Pervez Musharraf in Karachi (31 March 2013) Gen Musharraf is facing a number of charges relating to his time in office

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Pakistan's top court has ordered former military ruler Pervez Musharraf to respond to allegations he committed treason.

On Tuesday, judges at the Supreme Court will consider an application to have him put on trial for imposing emergency rule and arresting judges in 2007.

The order comes after he was approved to run in next month's polls.

But he has also been barred from leaving the country - two weeks after he returned from self-imposed exile.

Mr Musharraf - who led a military government from 1999 until 2008 - had lived in Dubai and London and returned to run in the forthcoming parliamentary elections despite outstanding court cases against him.

Correspondents say his path has been rocky since his return. His election nomination papers were rejected in other locations before he was chosen as a candidate in the remote northern district of Chitral.

The Supreme Court was responding to petitions from lawyers who allege that Mr Musharraf committed treason by suspending the constitution and sacking the entire higher judiciary in November 2007.

The court has asked the former leader to appear on Tuesday when it considers whether or not to put him on trial. It is unclear whether he will appear in person or send his lawyer.

This is not the only legal case Mr Musharraf is facing in relation to his time in office.

He is accused of failing to provide adequate security for former PM Benazir Bhutto ahead of her assassination in 2007; and he is wanted in connection with the murder of a Baloch tribal leader, Nawab Akbar Bugti.

The former president has described the cases against him as "baseless" and politically motivated.

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