Baitullah Mehsud Says Musharraf is the Real Killer of
Baitullah Denies Hand in Benazir’s Assassination
Commander Baitullah Mehsud, accused of masterminding the attack that killed Benazir Bhutto in Rawalpindi, has
rejected the allegations as baseless.
“We are equally grieved by the tragic death of Benazir and
extend our sympathies to her family and party workers in this hour of grief,” said Mr. Omar, a spokesman for Baitullah Mehsud and his Tehreek-e-Pakistan [Pakistan Movement], a conglomerate of all the Pashtun organisations operating in tribal areas as well as the settled districts of the NWFP.
Baitullah Mehsud, Ameer or central leader of the recently-formed Tehreek-e-Pakistan, was accused by the Interior Ministry Spokesman Brig. (retd.) Javed Iqbal Cheema of sending the bomber near the vehicle of Benazir Bhutto outside the Liaquat Bagh in Rawalpindi.
Mr Omar on Saturday said Baitullah Mehsud, while sensing the gravity of the allegations levelled against him, convened an emergency meeting of Tehreek-e-Pakistan [Council] comprising senior commanders at a secret place somewhere between South and North Waziristan tribal region to clarify his position.
“Why on earth would we kill her [Benazir Bhutto]? We had no enmity with her and more importantly she had done no wrong to us,” Mr Omar said while quoting Baitullah Mehsud as telling the Council meeting.
He said that it was against the teachings of Islam and Shariah, as well as the centuries old rich traditions of the tribal people, not to harm a woman and added that the [illegal Musharraf] government allegations against the commander were part of face-saving moves it had resorted to ever since the incident took place.
“By blaming us for the murder of an important political leader like Benazir Bhutto, the government is in fact misguiding the world. Planning such actions is simply beyond our imagination,” he claimed.
“We want to assure the Pakistan People’s Party [PPP] leaders and its workers that we can’t even think of killing their leader. We are with them in this hour of grief and sorrow,” claimed the spokesman.
He alleged that the unlawful Musharraf government was attempting to portray the tribal areas as centers of “terrorists” so as to earn dollars from, what he termed as, Western masters. “This is why they keep the tribal belt in continuous grip of violence.”
Accusing the Pakistan Army’s secret agencies for the crime, he said the modus operandi and precision of the strike revealed that the gruesome act was committed by professional hands.
It may be recalled here that Baitullah Mehsud was also [maliciously and illegally] accused of threatening Benazir Bhutto with “suicide attacks” – [by the Musharraf government-controlled Daily Times toilet
paper of Najam Sethi (venal Editor) and corrupt Salman Taseer (Publisher and illegal Minister for Industries, Production and Special Initiatives in the unlawful Caretaker Cabinet of Tyrant Musharraf and illegal Crime Minister Mohammedmian Soomro)] upon her arrival in
[Karachi] Pakistan [on 18 October 2007] – that he later denied.
The commander at that time said he had never thought of such an attack as he knew that it would kill innocent people.
Mr Omar said they had time and again disowned the statement attributed to Baitullah Mehsud regarding the “suicide attacks” on Benazir upon her return from abroad, but lamented that certain people conveniently ignored the same to promote their interests.
Mehsud Had Told Benazir: ‘I Am Not Your Enemy’
“Identify your enemy, I am not your enemy, I have nothing to do with you or against you or with the assassination attempt on you on October 19,” Baitullah Mehsud, the local Waziristan tribal leader conveyed this message twice
to Benazir Bhutto, the PPP spokesman Farhatullah Babar claimed on Saturday.
“The top PPP leadership trusted the message,” Babar disclosed, adding that it was conveyed by Mehsud through two different reliable emissaries after the October 19 2007 assassination attempt on her life in Karsaz, Karachi.
Mehsud had conveyed to Benazir Bhutto that his activities were limited to Waziristan and were of a defensive nature. “I have neither the resources to fight outside Waziristan nor I have any plans to attack Benazir Bhutto in future,” Mehsud had conveyed to the top PPP leadership.
Babar claimed that the voice recording of the alleged conversation between Baitullah Mehsud and another religious leader presented before the media on Friday by the Pakistan Interior Ministry was ridiculous and a deliberate attempt to divert the attention of the nation from the real culprits.
He added: “We have no doubt that Baitullah Mehsud is not involved in Thursday’s 27 December 2007 tragic incident. Rather, we have serious doubts against those mentioned in the letter written by Benazir to Pervez Musharraf before and after the October 19 Karsaz tragedy.”
“If the government had seriously gone through the contents of the letter and had fulfilled our demand to hire the services of some foreign investigative agencies to probe into the Karachi attack, Thursday’s tragic incident might have been avoided,” Babar added.
“Instead of diverting the attention of the people of Pakistan towards Baitullah Mehsud, should the government hire the services of an international professional investigative agency, matters can proceed in a better direction,” Babar said.
“Now the people of Pakistan can understand when someone is trying to fool them,” Babar said, adding: “If an inquiry in the murder case of Rafiq Hariri can be held by international experts, it can also be held in this case to expose the conspirators.”
PPP Demands Probe Based on Benazir’s Letter
The chief of Benazir Bhutto’s security, Rehman Malik, told The News on Friday he was conveyed through a senior journalist who had directly spoken to Baitullah Mehsud that Mehsud had no enmity with Benazir and had no plans to attack or kill her.
He said that the PPP had demanded of the illegal Pervez Musharraf government to give credible evidences, if it had any, regarding the involvement of Baitullah Mehsud in the tragic incident.
He said as the security adviser to Benazir Bhutto, he still had not received any medical or enquiry report of the incident or the recording of the conversation on phone between Mehsud and his companion.
He said that he would be in a proper position to comment on the unlawful Musharraf government findings after he would officially receive the documents.
Earlier, on the directions of the PPP Chairperson, PPP Senator Safdar Abbasi had asked FATA Senator Mohammad Saleh Shah Qureshi to contact Baitullah Mehsud and ask him why he reportedly wanted to kill Benazir Bhutto. When Saleh Shah met Mehsud at an unidentified location in the tribal areas, Mehsud assured Saleh Shah that some enemy of Benazir was deliberately attempting to spread misinformation
that he wanted to kill her.
“I have no plans to do so and have no enmity with Benazir Bhutto,” Mehsud had assured the Senator.
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