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Court disqualifies Musharraf from parliament elections

PESHAWAR, Pakistan -- High court judges disqualified former military ruler Pervez Musharraf on Tuesday from running in the parliamentary election, probably ending any hope of a political comeback.

Musharraf has faced paltry public support, a raft of legal challenges and Taliban death threats since he returned to Pakistan last month after years in self-imposed exile.

He received a rare piece of good news a week ago when a judge in the remote northern district of Chitral approved his bid to run in the May 11 election. Lawyers challenged the Chitral decision, and yesterday the high court in Peshawar disqualified Musharraf from running in the district, said two lawyers who raised objections, Taufiq Asif and Rao Abdur Rahim. Asif challenged the candidacy because of Musharraf's actions while in power, while Rahim said there were procedural flaws with the former military ruler's nomination.

Musharraf faces a variety of legal charges, including some related to the 2007 assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

Also On Tuesday, a suicide bomber targeting members of an anti-Taliban political party in the northwest killed 16 people and wounded more than 40, police and hospital officials said.

-- AP

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