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Pakistan lawyers launch new protests calling for restoration of judges

[JURIST] Pakistani lawyers protested Sunday, continuing their call for the reinstatement of former Supreme Court justices who were ousted [JURIST report] after President Pervez Musharraf declared emergency rule [JURIST report] in November 2007. Sunday's protest kicks off a week of protests [JURIST report] marking the one-year anniversary of the date when Musharraf first suspended former Pakistani Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry [JURIST news archive]. The campaign, known as "black flag week," is being led by Pakistani Supreme Court Bar Association President Aitzaz Ahsan [PILDAT profile]. Lawyers are wearing black arm or head bands and flying black flags outside their offices and at bar association buildings. Ahsan has said that protests will continue if the new government does not reinstate Chaudhry and some 50 other judges removed in November. IANS has more.

The Pakistan People's Party and the Pakistan Muslim League [party websites] vowed last week to establish a fully independent judiciary [JURIST report]. The two parties, which will form Pakistan's new coalition government, also agreed to work together [JURIST report] toward the reinstatement of Chaudhry and other ousted judges. The two parties formally signed an agreement Sunday forming the coalition government. Under the agreement [text], parliament will vote within the next month on reinstating the judges. AP has more.

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