BHUTTO, MIR MURTAZA (1954-1996) Mir Murtaza Bhutto, born in 1954,was the second child of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Nusrat Bhutto He was 23 years old when Zia ul-Haq staged a coup that forced his father out of office When Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was executed two years later, Murtaza vowed to take revenge He organized a group called Al-Zulfikar, which carried out a number of terrorist operations in the country, including the hijacking of a Pakistan International Airlines plane in 1981Murtaza Bhutto spent several years in self-imposed exile in Damascus, Syria, where he met his second wife, Ghinwa He returned to Pakistan in 1994 and was promptly arrested and was imprisoned for several months before being released on bail by the Sindh High Court He subsequently formed his own faction of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and named it after his father The PPP (Bhutto Shaheed) failed to gain much support even in rural Sindh Murtaza was gunned down by a group of assailants on the night of 20 September 1996 His murder was one of several developments that led President Farooq Leghari to dismiss Benazir Bhutto and arrest her husband, Asif Zardari, who was charged with conspiracy to murder Murtaza Bhutto

Zardari was kept in custody from 1997 to 2004 on charges ranging from corruption to murder, but the prosecution failed to prove his involvement in any of the alleged cases He was granted bail and released in November 2004 However, he was rearrested on 21 December 2004 after his failure to attend a hearing in a murder trial in Karachi He was charged with conspiracy in the 1996 killing of a judge and his son

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