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Pakistan "retires" dissident judges
by Al Jazeera (reposted)
Wednesday Dec 5th, 2007 7:03 AM
Wednesday, December 5, 2007 : Ex-chief justice among those eased out as protests against emergency rule continue.
Nawaz Sharif has called for the judges to be
reinstated [AFP]

Pakistan's government has formally retired 37 judges who refused to take an oath of allegiance to Pervez Musharraf, the president, after he imposed a state of emergency on November 3.

Many of the judges, including Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, the former chief justice, say they have been under effective house arrest since then.

"Thirteen judges of the Supreme Court and 24 judges of the high courts of Lahore, Peshawar and Sindh stand retired with the issuance of notification by the law ministry," Malik Muhammad Qayyum, the attorney general, said.

Pakistan's opposition parties, including those led by Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif, former prime ministers, have called for the judges to be reinstated.

Special report


Only four of the Supreme Court's former total of 17 judges agreed to be sworn in under emergency legislation brought in by Musharraf.

The president has been in conflict with the judiciary since he tried to sack Chaudhry in March, a move that led to massive street protests.

He cited "judicial interference" as one of the reasons for imposing emergency rule

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