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DATE=3/20/2000
TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
TITLE=PAKISTAN - SHARIF TRIAL (L)
NUMBER=2-260367
BYLINE=AYAZ GUL
DATELINE=ISLAMABAD
INTERNET=YES
CONTENT=
VOICED AT:
INTRO:  Prosecutors in the case against 
Pakistan's former prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, 
said Monday that they plan to seek the death 
penalty if he is convicted.  Mr. Sharif and six 
others are charged with kidnapping, hijacking and 
attempted murder for their roles in the alleged 
diversion of a plane the night Pakistan's 
military seized control.  From Islamabad, Ayaz 
Gul reports.
TEXT:  The prosecution sought the death penalty 
for Pakistan's former prime minister as it began 
final arguments in the special anti-terrorism 
court in Karachi (Monday).
Chief prosecutor Raja Quereshi argued that the 
prosecution has proved its hijacking case against 
Mr. Sharif and the anti-terrorism law requires 
"maximum punishment" for the offense.  He said 
the court will have to give a reason for awarding 
a lesser punishment.
The prosecution has two more days to wrap up the 
case.  The defense is expected to make its 
closing arguments later this week.
Mr. Sharif, his brother Shahbaz and five others 
are accused of having endangered the lives of the 
army chief General Pervez Musharraf and 200 
others on board a plane on October 12 by trying 
to prevent the aircraft from landing in Pakistan. 
The plane, which was running dangerously low on 
fuel, eventually landed at Karachi airport after 
the military seized power. 
Mr. Sharif says he is  not  guilty of the charges 
against him and that the evidence against him is 
fabricated.
The prosecution's call for the death penalty 
follows remarks by U-S officials that President 
Clinton, when he visits Pakistan later this week, 
will urge Pakistani leaders to spare Nawaz 
Sharif's life if he is convicted. (Signed)
NEB/AG/KL
20-Mar-2000 10:24 AM EDT (20-Mar-2000 1524 UTC)
NNNN
Source: Voice of America
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