Pakistan Vows to Released Opposition Leader from House Arrest

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AP) -- Pakistan's government says it will free opposition leader Benazir Bhutto from house arrest by tomorrow.

Bhutto was placed under house arrest today, with police uncoiling barbed wire in front of her Islamabad villa. She twice tried to leave in her car, telling police not to "raise hands on women." They responded by blocking her way with an armored vehicle.

The former prime minister had planned to defy a ban on political gatherings and address a rally, where police used tear gas and batons to chase off hundreds of supporters.

The United States has called for Pakistan to end Bhutto's house arrest.

Today's crackdown showed that President Pervez Musharraf was not letting up on his political rivals, despite saying yesterday that parliamentary elections would go ahead by mid-February.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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