Difficult to work with Musharraf: Benazir

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Lahore, Nov 16: Former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto has said it was difficult for her to work with President Pervez Musharraf because he had taken Pakistan "back towards military dictatorship"

Bhutto made these comments shortly after a visit by US Consul General Bryan Hunt at the residence of Senator Latif Khosa after the Punjab government lifted a house arrest order imposed on her early on Friday, Aaj TV reported.

"He (Hunt) came to find out whether I could work with Musharraf, and I told him that it was very difficult to work with someone who instead of taking us toward democracy took us back towards military dictatorship," she said.

The Americans "worry about what would happen if there was not a smooth transition, and they worry about what would happen if Musharraf left and there would be a vacuum. So that is a concern, and a valid concern," a foreign news agency quoted Bhutto, as saying.

"I share that thought, too. In fact, once Musharraf agrees to go, we need to have an exit strategy. I think an exit strategy is very important," she added.

The Punjab Government has also decided to release HRCP Chairwoman Asma Jehangir and other detained women, the Daily Times reported.

Meanwhile, the US has said if the authorities in Pakistan have withdrew the house arrest orders of Bhutto, it will be a positive step.

State department"s spokesman Sean McCormick told reporters in Washington that if the arrest orders of Benazir Bhutto were withdrawn, it is a positive step.

He however stressed for release of all political prisoners in Pakistan, and demanded immediate end of the emergency rule in the country.

 

ANI
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