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Bhutto murder: Pak to request for UN probe

world Updated: May 22, 2008 20:55 IST

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi will travel to New York next month to formally request the United Nations to probe the assassination of former premier Benazir Bhutto.

Pakistan's representative at the UN would seek an appointment with Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon so that the formal request for the probe could be handed over to the world body, Qureshi told a joint news conference here with Law Minister Farooq Naek.

Naek said a probe by a global body is necessary as international elements were involved in Bhutto's December 27 assassination and the government wants the UN to unmask the conspirators and financiers behind her killing.

The ruling Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) had pledged before the February general election that if it came to power, it would ask the UN to investigate the assassination of its late chairperson Bhutto. The two-time premier was assassinated in a gun-and-bomb attack after she addressed an election rally in Rawalpindi on December 27.

The previous caretaker government had rejected the demand for a UN probe from PPP and Qureshi said the new government wants to expose those who were behind Bhutto's murder.

Qureshi said Naek would accompany him to New York to meet the UN Secretary General to formally deliver the letter requesting a probe by an international commission.

Pakistan's National Assembly or lower house of parliament and four provincial assemblies have already unanimously passed resolutions calling for a probe into Bhutto's assassination by the UN. Qureshi noted that even parties that are opposed to the PPP had backed the resolutions.