ND human rights scholar says Musharraf should resign



With Pakistan’s recent parliamentary elections swept by opposition candidates,President Pervez Musharrafshould resign, according to Douglass Cassel, director of the Notre Dame Law Schools Center for Civil and Human Rights.

Sen. Joseph Biden, who recently traveled to Afghanistan and Pakistan, said that he thoughtMusharraf would quit his job peacefully andgo gently into that good night,but Rashid Qureshi, a spokesman for Musharraf, yesterday dismissed Bidens remarks, adding,Its very clear that the president has been elected for a period of five years by the representative assemblies who had been elected by the Pakistani people and not by any senator from the United States.

The defeat of President Musharraf’s party in the parliamentary elections is an important first step,Cassel said.It means that the prime minister and the government will now come from the opposition.We must hope that Mr. Musharraf will now take the next responsible stepto resign from the presidency, which he unlawfully usurped after firing most of the Supreme Court.

Cassel, a specialist in international human rights and international criminal law, has been a consultant to the United Nations, the Organization of American States, the U.S. State Department, and the Ford Foundation. From 1992 to 1993, he served as legal advisor to the U.N. Commission on the Truth for El Salvador, supervising its investigations, and acting as principle editor of its report.

_ Contact: Douglass Cassel at (574) 631-7895 or_ " Doug.Cassel@nd.edu ":mailto:Doug.Cassel@nd.edu

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