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Pakistan Marks Anniversary of Bhutto Killing

  • VOA News

Hundreds of thousands of Pakistanis gathered in southern Pakistan on Saturday to mark the first anniversary of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto's assassination.

The charismatic, Oxford-educated leader was killed one year ago in a suicide gun and bomb attack as she left a campaign rally in the garrison city of Rawalpindi.

Supporters traveled hundreds of kilometers to attend a ceremony at Ms. Bhutto's tomb (near Larkana) in her home province of Sindh. Security was tight as mourners wailed and beat their chests, dropping rose petals on her grave.

In a message marking the anniversary, Ms. Bhutto's husband, President Asif Ali Zardari, said tyrants may have managed to kill her, but they will never be able to kill her goal of democratic reforms in Pakistan.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Friday he hopes an independent commission of inquiry into Ms. Bhutto's killing will be established soon.


The government of then-Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf as well as the United States blamed the assassination on Islamic extremists.

The Pakistani government has declared December 27th a national holiday to honor Ms. Bhutto, the first woman to lead a Muslim nation. It has issued commemorative stamps and a 10-rupee (13-cent) coin bearing her picture.

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