Pakistani Interior Minister 'to reveal Benazir Bhutto killers in book'

Controversial politician claims he will release more details of assassination of former leader

The controversy over the unanswered questions surrounding the assassination of Benazir Bhutto, the former Pakistani Prime Minister, has taken another twist after the country’s Interior Minister reportedly said he would reveal the identity of the killers in a forthcoming book.

Pakistani media reported that the famously outspoken Rehman Malik said he would name Bhutto’s Pakistani Taliban (TTP) assassins and provide other new details about her killing in a speech on Monday to members of the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party in Chitral. He said the information would be made public on 27 December, the fifth anniversary of her killing. He also claimed his counter-terrorism efforts had resulted in the fracturing of the TTP and said he would offer an amnesty to militants willing to give up violence.

“It is a fact that the majority of TTP activists are those who do it out of poverty and unemployment,” he said, according to the Dawn newspaper.

Bhutto, who twice served as Prime Minister, was killed in 2007 after returning to Pakistan following a decade in exile to launch a political comeback.

She was being driven away after campaigning in Rawalpindi, when a man fired three shots at her as she stood up through the sunroof of her vehicle. Then a large bomb exploded, killing 24 people.

The assassination of Bhutto, 54, has been surrounded by questions. In a book written by the former premier and published after her death, Bhutto raised concerns about figures within the security establishment, while her husband, Asif Ali Zardari, claimed that the President at the time, Pervez Musharraf, was behind the attack, something he always denied.

Two subsequent investigations – one by a UN team and another by Scotland Yard detectives – also found huge lapses in security and said her killing could have been avoided. The team of British detectives concluded it was more likely Bhutto died after hitting her head on the lever that controlled the sunroof than from gunshots. A post-mortem examination was never carried out.

In the absence of hard answers, conspiracy theories have filled the vacuum. In a recent essay in the London Review of Books, BBC journalist Owen Bennett-Jones, wrote: “Bhutto’s supporters want to establish that there was a sophisticated, officially sponsored conspiracy; the state prefers the idea of a crude but unpreventable attack by Islamic militants.”

Last night, Mr Malik was unavailable for comment and his office failed to respond to calls. However, he took to Twitter to claim he had been misquoted. The minister claimed he had not said he would reveal the identity of Bhutto’s assassins but that “more facts” about the case would be made public.

Rasul Bakhsh Rais, a Lahore-based political analyst, believes Mr Malik may have been making a “sales pitch” but is serious about revealing some details. He said: “What is not clear is to what extent this information will be new and how much it will be a revelation.”

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Life and Style
love + sex A new study has revealed the average size - but does that leave men outside the 'normal' range being thought of as 'abnormal'?
Arts and Entertainment
TV
Voices
The Palace of Westminster is falling down, according to John Bercow
voices..says Matthew Norman
Sport
Steve Bruce and Gus Poyet clash
football
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
News
Graham Norton said Irish broadcaster RTE’s decision to settle was ‘moronic’
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Jake and Dinos Chapman were motivated by revenge to make 'Bring me the Head of Franco Toselli! '
arts + ents Shapero Modern Gallery to show explicit Chapman Brothers film
Arts and Entertainment
Kurt Cobain performing for 'MTV Unplugged' in New York, shortly before his death
music Brett Morgen's 'Cobain: Montage of Heck' debunks many of the myths
Life and Style
life
Sport
Brendan Rodgers
football The Liverpool manager will be the first option after Pep Guardiola
News
Amazon misled consumers about subscription fees, the ASA has ruled
news
Arts and Entertainment
Myanna Buring, Julian Rhind-Tutt and Russell Tovey in 'Banished'
TV Jimmy McGovern tackles 18th-century crime and punishment
Arts and Entertainment
Paul Whitehouse as Herbert
arts + ents
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Lettings and Sales Negotiator - OTE £46,000

£16000 - £46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Home Care Worker - Reading and Surrounding Areas

£9 - £13 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity to join a s...

Recruitment Genius: Key Sales Account Manager - OTE £35,000

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Have you got a proven track rec...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £40,000

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity for...

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn