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All That Is Left For Pak Army Is To ‘Murder Me’: Imran Khan Writes From Prison

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LONDON/ISLAMABAD, May 3: Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Imran Khan has lamented the sorry state of affairs in the country where political leaders like him languish in jail and said all that is left for the powerful military leadership was to “murder” him.
In a column for the UK’s ‘Daily Telegraph’ newspaper, penned from the Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi where he is being held for disputed corruption charges, the 71-year-old cricketer-turned-politician reiterated his previous assertion that if anything happens to him or his wife, General Asim Munir – the Chief of Army Staff, will be responsible.
The founder of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party said the cash-strapped country was at a “dangerous crossroads”, with the government a “laughing stock”.
“The military establishment has done all they could against me. All that is left for them is to now murder me,” writes Khan.
“I have stated publicly that if anything happens to me or my wife (Bushra Bibi), Gen. Asim Munir will be responsible. But I am not afraid because my faith is strong. I would prefer death over slavery,” he says.
The powerful army, which has ruled Pakistan for more than half of its 75-plus years of existence, has wielded considerable power in matters of security and foreign policy. However, the military has denied meddling in the country’s politics.
Khan warned that the state was treading the same path it trod in 1971, when it lost East Pakistan, now Bangladesh.
“At the same time, it is seeing an upsurge in terrorism and a growing alienation in Balochistan where the issue of enforced disappearances is growing in severity. On Pakistan’s borders, India has already admitted to undertaking assassinations inside of Pakistan and the international border with Afghanistan remains volatile,” he notes.
Khan notes the military establishment’s expectation of “unquestioning support” from the US, in return for the provision of access to airspace and related facilities to the US for military purposes, has been punctured after the publication of the latest US State Department’s Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, which highlights the many human rights violations in Pakistan.
“With an economy in crisis, spiralling prices and a people politically angry at having their electoral mandate stolen and being economically beleaguered, the state stands isolated,” he writes.
Khan hailed the “democratic revenge” of the February 8 general election, during which people came out and “voted overwhelmingly” for candidates supported by his party.
“Unfortunately, instead of accepting the people’s mandate, the military establishment went into a fit of rage and electoral results were manipulated to bring into power the losers. The same vote tampering was seen in the recent by-elections,” he notes.
The PTI founder also praised the six “brave judges” of the Islamabad High Court who have written a letter to the Chief Justice of Pakistan highlighting instances of harassment and blackmail including of their families by intelligence agencies.
“This is unprecedented in our history – although, informally, many knew what was happening to the senior judiciary but for such a letter to have come from these judges shows the level of despair, anger and frustration,” he writes. (Agencies)

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