Taliban did not kill Benazir: Imran Khan


 

 Statement

Taliban did not kill Benazir Bhutto,” said Imran Khan Chairman PTI in an interview with The British daily Telegraph on May 2, 2013.

Background

Benazir Bhutto, former prime minister of Pakistan and Pakistan People’s Party former chairperson, was assassinated on December 27, 2007 in Rawalpindi during an election rally. Pakistani investigation agencies, police, Special Branch, FIA and Inter Service Intelligence’s findings held Baitullah Mehsud and Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan responsible for the assassination of Benazir Bhutto. The United Nations’ investigation of the incident revealed, “Benazir Bhutto’s killing could have been prevented if adequate security measures had been taken.” However, her killers are still at large.

The check

To confirm Imran Khan’s statement, Truth Tracker phoned PTI’s spokesperson Andleeb Abbas. She could not give definite answers.  However, she said, “Imran Khan made this statement while keeping in view the book of Benazir Bhutto ‘Reconciliation: Islam, Democracy and the West’ in which she named the security establishment a threat to her life.” When Truth Tracker pointed out that Benazir Bhutto also mentioned threats from Taliban, Abbas said, “Later, Benazir Bhutto wrote a letter to then-President Pervez Musharraf and revealed threats from the security establishment, not from the Taliban. On these grounds, Khan made this statement.”

Information Secretary of PPP Qamar Zaman Kaira told Truth Tracker that Imran Khan was not the head of any security agency and he should have thought before making such a serious statement.  “Benazir Bhutto was an international leader. Some low-profile politicians make such statements regarding prominent leaders to raise their own political stature and to get fame in the media,” Kaira said. “Perhaps Imran Khan did the same,” he added. “How can Imran say that Taliban did not kill Benazir when the UN, Scotland Yard and FIA’s investigations all clearly indicate that Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud killed Benazir Bhutto?” Kaira asked.

Benazir’s book

Benazir Bhutto in her book, published posthumously, ‘Reconciliation: Islam, Democracy and the West’, wrote very clearly on page 233 that the main threat to her life comes from Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud. Benazir writes, “When I returned home, I did not know whether I would live or die. The Musharraf government and another foreign government told me that four squads of suicide bombers would attempt to kill me.”

The squads included Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud, Osama bin Ladin’s son Hamza bin Ladin, Lal Masjid (Red Mosque)’s Squad and another squad of militants from Karachi.

Scotland Yard

Scotland Yard’s findings about the killing of Benazir Bhutto concluded that Al-Qaeda was involved in killing of Benazir Bhutto and her killing eventually happened due to Al-Qaeda’s conspiracy.

The Confession of Al-Qaeda leader Mustafa Abu Yazid

Talking to Italian news agency ‘Adnkrones International’, a day after the assignation of Benazir Bhutto and later, to Asian Times Online’s Correspondent Syed Salim Shahzad, Al-Qaeda leader Saeed Al-Misri alias Mustafa Abu Yazid claimed responsibility for killing Benazir Bhutto and confessed, “We have eliminated the most precious asset (Benazir) of America. Benazir had decided to defeat Mujahideen.” Abu Yazid said Al-Qaeda’s Second-in-Command Ayman al-Zawahiri had decided in October 2007 to kill Benazir.

Abu Yazid was, in fact, in charge of Al-Qaeda’s financial affairs and Al-Qaeda had given him responsibility to maintain relations between Pakistani Taliban and Al-Qaeda.

 CIA Chief’s statement

In an interview with the Washington Post, the then-CIA chief Michael Hayden said that the CIA accused Baitullah Mehsud and Al Qaeda for killing Benazir Bhutto.

Nawa-e-Afghan Jihad Magazine, Hateen

Taliban, in their Nawa-e-Afghan Jihad and Hateen magazines, claimed responsibility for the assassination of Benazir at the time.

The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda’s Road to 9/11

Author Lawrence Wright revealed Al-Qaeda administrative strategy in his book, “The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda’s Road to 9/11.” In the light of this book, the research conducted by Truth Tracker shows that Al-Qaeda nominated Baithullah Mehsud to kill Benazir.

Independent Viewpoint

Suhail Warraich, political affairs editor with Geo TV (a private news channel in Pakistan), anchor, and author of the book “Qatil Kon?” or “Who is the assassin of Benazir?” told Truth Tracker in an interview that Al-Qaeda killed Benazir and that there is solid proof. He said that he did not see any difference between Al-Qaeda and Taliban; and that they were two sides of the same coin.

“Making statements and distorting facts to score political points is a fashion among our politicians,” Warraich said.  “Imran Khan is not clear in his mind about Taliban. Sometimes, he says Taliban want to kill him, then he says the government should hold negotiations with them. Therefore his statement can’t be believed,” he said.

Keeping in view the investigations of Scotland Yard, a renowned British journalist Christina Lamb wrote in The Sunday Times of London on January 13, 2008 that Al-Qaeda was involved in killing of Benazir.

Our Ruling

Based on this strong evidence, Truth Tracker rates Imran Khan’s statement a Flaming Lie.

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1 Comment

  1. Lisa Schnellinger
    October 28, 2013

    Truth Tracker takes care not to hand out the "flaming lie" ruling without considering the evidence – see what you think of this one!