AFP Reports on the statements made by Hina Jilani, the special representative of the UN secretary general on human rights defenders – OTHER RELATED REPORTS – BBC, International Herald Tribune & School of Law at University of Pittsburgh
A UN human rights envoy on Thursday told US lawmakers not to send any delegation to monitor the upcoming election in Pakistan, claiming that it was already rigged by President Pervez Musharraf. “There is no point in monitoring the elections or watching the poll — the rigging has already happened,” said Hina Jilani, a prominent Pakistani attorney who is also the UN special envoy for human rights defenders. She made the remarks after lawmakers at a Congressional hearing on the political crisis in Pakistan sought her opinion on the prospect of monitoring the January 8 polls to elect a new parliament.
Jilani, co-founder of the Human Rights Commission in Pakistan, charged that Musharraf, who was expected to lift a five-week-old state of emergency on Saturday, had already destroyed institutions such as the judiciary and the press. Fearing that the Supreme Court would disqualify him from running for re-election, Musharraf sacked and detained independent-minded judges and lawyers leaders who refused to accept his imposition of emergency rule. “Freedom of assembly is totally curtailed, freedom of expression is curtailed,” Jilani said.
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