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Musharraf Hospitalized Before Special Hearing on Treason

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Jan. 2 (Bloomberg) -- Former Pakistan president Pervez Musharraf was brought to a hospital that specializes in heart surgeries just before he was scheduled to appear before a judge and hear charges of treason.

Musharraf, 70, is undergoing treatment at the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology, Ahmed Raza Khan Kasuri, one of his lawyers, said in televised comments to reporters in Islamabad. He was brought into the hospital on a stretcher after complaining of chest pain and is currently undergoing tests in the intensive care unit, Geo television reported, citing eyewitnesses and unidentified doctors.

The former military ruler is set to become Pakistan’s first retired general to face treason, a charge stemming from his 2007 move to suspend the constitution and impose emergency rule. He is currently out on bail in three other cases, including the murders of a former prime minister and a local Baloch leader and holding judges in detention.

Musharraf is conscious, oriented in time and space and is being examined by Pakistani military doctors, Raza Bokhari, an international spokesman for the former president, said in an e-mailed statement.

The government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who was ousted in a coup by Musharraf in 1999, said on Nov. 17 it would press charges against him for violating the constitution. Sharif’s party won a May election in the country’s first-ever transition between elected governments.

Musharraf’s convoy of cars and security vans was headed to the court before rerouting to the hospital, Geo reported.

Several phone calls to the mobile phone of Aasia Ishaque, a spokeswoman for Musharraf’s party, went unanswered.

To contact the reporter on this story: Khurrum Anis in Karachi at kkhan14@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Daniel Ten Kate at dtenkate@bloomberg.net