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Musharraf postpones execution of Briton

The execution of Mirza Tahir Hussain, from Leeds in northern England, was due next month shortly after his 36th birthday.

india Updated: May 24, 2006 11:16 IST

Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf has granted an indefinite stay of execution for a British man held in jail for 18 years for the murder of a taxi driver, officials said on Tuesday.

Mirza Tahir Hussain, from Leeds in northern England, was due to be hanged next month shortly after his 36th birthday.

He was earlier cleared by Pakistan's high court but an Islamic court reinstated the sentence.

"The president has granted an indefinite stay of execution on compassionate grounds," a spokesman for the Pakistani High Commission in London told the agency by telephone.

"The president cannot commute the sentence because it has been upheld by the highest court," he said.

A government official in Islamabad said Musharraf had postponed the execution indefinitely to allow Hussain's family to settle the issue under Islamic law with the relatives of the dead man.

First Published: May 23, 2006 17:06 IST