Court summons new Pakistan PM

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ISLAMABAD. August 8. KAZINFORM Pakistan's Supreme Court has ordered PM Raja Pervez Ashraf to appear before it over his failure to reopen corruption cases against the president, according to BBC.

It comes two months after Mr Ashraf's predecessor, Yousuf Raza Gilani, was found guilty of contempt over the same issue and disqualified from office.

There has been a long-running standoff between the government and the judiciary in Pakistan.

Observers fear the move could lead to further political instability.

The judiciary wants the government to ask the Swiss authorities to reopen corruption cases against President Asif Ali Zardari.

The charges against Mr Zardari date back to the 1990s when his late wife, Benazir Bhutto, was prime minister.

He and Ms Bhutto were accused of using Swiss bank accounts to launder bribe money. Mr Zardari insists the charges are politically motivated.

Mr Gilani had refused to reopen the case against Mr Zardari, arguing that the president had immunity from prosecution as head of state.

Last week the Supreme Court struck down a new law exempting top government officials from contempt of court charges, saying it was unconstitutional.

 

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