Benazir murder case: Rehman Malik removed from witness list

Source: Published in Justice on Tuesday, February 16, 2016

ISLAMABAD: The prosecution in the Benazir Bhutto murder case dropped Senator Rehman Malik, ‘star’ witness against (retired) Gen Pervez Musharraf, on Monday after Mr Malik failed to attend the third consecutive hearing of the case.

An Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) in Rawalpindi had on February 2 summoned Mr Malik to record his statement on February 8. Malik did not appear on that date or at the subsequent hearing on February 10. The court then asked him to appear on February 15.

When ATC Judge Mohammad Ayub Khan Marth resumed proceedings of the trial on Monday, the prosecution informed him that the senator could not make it to court again. The prosecution then requested the court to proceed with another witness as they were going to remove Mr Malik’s name from their list of witnesses. Former interior minister Rehman Malik was the fifth witness against Mr Musharraf.

Earlier on February 3, Mr Malik had said his name was not on the witness list because he had not recorded a formal statement with an investigation agency and had voluntarily provided some information to the investigation agency regarding Ms Bhutto’s meeting with Mr Musharraf in Dubai, before Ms Bhutto returned in 2007.

So far three witnesses have testified in the case, including former interior secretary Syed Kamal Shah, former director general National Crisis Management Cell (retired) Brig Javed Iqbal and US lobbyist Mark Siegel. The prosecution has already removed former director general Intelligence Bureau (retired) Brig Ejaz Shah as a witness against Mr Musharraf.

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