Pakistan’s former president Pervez Musharraf dies after long illness

Pakistan’s former president Pervez Musharraf dies after long illness

Pakistan’s former military ruler Pervez Musharraf has died in Dubai, aged 79, after a long illness, the army said on Sunday.

Senior military chiefs “express heartfelt condolences on sad demise of General Pervez Musharraf”, a brief statement released by the military’s media wing said. “May Allah bless the departed soul and give strength to bereaved family.”

Mr Musharraf, a four-star general who ruled Pakistan for nearly a decade after assuming power in 1999, spent his final years in self-imposed exile.

His body will be repatriated from Dubai on Monday, Pakistan’s Geo TV reported.

Pakistani President Shehbaz Sharif offered his condolences to his family in a short statement.

“May the departed soul rest in peace,” he wrote on Twitter.

Mr Musharraf held the presidency from 2001 until 2008, when he resigned in order to avoid impeachment after imposing a state of emergency in 2007.

He survived several assassination attempts during his time in office.

His family revealed in 2018 that he had been diagnosed with Amyloidosis, a rare disease that caused by a build-up of an abnormal protein called amyloid in organs and tissues. He had travelled to Dubai two years earlier to seek medical treatment.

The former president was hospitalised in June last year, when his family said his recovery from the condition was “not possible.”

Mr Musharraf assumed power after ousting former PM Nawaz Sharif, who later backed Mr Musharraf’s potential return to Pakistan when his health deteriorated.

He was a key US ally in the “war on terror” following 9/11 and allowed Washington access to Pakistani airspace and supply lines to fight the Taliban despite domestic opposition.

In 2019, he was found guilty of high treason and sentenced to death in absentia for imposing emergency rule in 2007.

The sentence was later quashed.

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