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Pakistan high court to probe Bhutto bombing: chief justice

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of Pakistan will investigate the suicide bombing [CNN report] that took place during the parade welcoming home exiled former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto [BBC profile] earlier this month, Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry said Wednesday. Chaudhry said that the court will undertake its own investigation beginning with a hearing on Thursday, despite the Pakistan government's promise to fully probe the incident, indicating that the court has grown impatient with the government's plan. On Tuesday, Chaudhry criticized [BBC report] current Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz for arranging for the deportation of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif [BBC profile] immediately upon his return from exile, saying that such a move was in violation of a court decision [JURIST report] holding that Sharif has full rights to return.

In mid-October, Bhutto returned home [JURIST report] to Pakistan after nine years of self-imposed exile in Great Britain and Dubai following charges of corruption. Last week, Pakistan violated an amnesty agreement signed by President Perez Musharraf when it upheld a bar on Bhutto from leaving the country. Bhutto and Musharraf are political rivals [BBC backgrounder], but Musharraf earlier this month signed [JURIST report] the "reconciliation ordinance" granting Bhutto amnesty in an attempt to boost his waning popularity. The high court has agreed to review the ordinance [JURIST report]. AP has more.

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