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Pakistan Court Orders Musharraf as Part of Bhutto Probe

An anti-terrorism court in Pakistan has ordered the country's former military ruler, Pervez Musharraf, to be part of the ongoing probe into the 2007 assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto.

Authorities escorted the former army chief and president to Rawalpindi where he appeared before the court Tuesday. After a brief hearing, the judges announced their decision and adjourned until May 3.

Outside the court, a clash between protesters and supporters of the former general reportedly left several people wounded.

Meanwhile police say a vehicle filled with explosives was found parked near the Musharraf residence Tuesday on the outskirts of Islamabad. Police say they have launched an investigation and added to Musharaff's security. Taliban extremists have threatened to kill Musharraf for launching military operations in Pakistan's tribal areas.



Authorities accuse Musharraf of failing to provide adequate security to Ms. Bhutto five years ago when she appeared at an election campaign rally. He also has been under house arrest for two weeks in connection with another court case in which he is accused of high treason for allegedly abusing the constitution and the judiciary while in power.

But the caretaker government has told the judiciary that it will leave the decision on filing charges in that case to the next elected government because it is beyond its current mandate to oversee the elections. If convicted of high treason, Musharraf could be put to death.

Musharraf and his attorneys have dismissed all the charges as politically motivated.

Because of his legal troubles regarding his controversial actions as leader, election officials also have barred Musharraf from participating in the country's elections set for May 11.

The former president, who took power in a military coup in 1999, resigned in 2008. He went into self-exile to avoid the possibility of arrest on charges linked to Ms. Bhutto's death.

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