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Seven Pakistan judges resign over chief justice suspension

[JURIST] The constitutional crisis in Pakistan over President Pervez Musharraf's suspension of Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry [official profile; JURIST news archive] deepened Monday with the resignation [Reuters report] of seven of the country's judges, including a top judge in Pakistan's populous Punjab province. Meanwhile protests sparked by the suspension continued [DPA report] across Pakistan for a ninth day as the Pakistan Supreme Court held a hearing whether Chaudhry was mistreated when he was allegedly pushed into a car when he refused to get in to be taken to a Supreme Judicial Council [governing constitutional provisions] for a hearing [JURIST report] Tuesday on the unspecified "misconduct" which is said to have prompted his removal.

Pakistani lawyers staged a one-hour symbolic strike Monday and several hundred marched against the suspension in Karachi. Lawyers have boycotted the courts [JURIST report] since Chaudhry's suspension, and street protests [JURIST report] have resulted in injuries and arrests. Hundreds of Pakistani lawyers in business suits clashed [JURIST report] with police Saturday in Lahore, throwing rocks after riot police fired teargas to disrupt a gathering. Reuters has more.

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