Pakistan 'bails Red Mosque leader'

Cleric will be freed despite still facing charges over the 2007 siege, lawyer says.

    More than 100 people were killed when security forces stormed the Red Mosque [GALLO/GETTY]

    Abdul Aziz has been under house arrest on the outskirts of Islamabad since being arrested as he tried to flee the mosque complex dressed in a woman's burqa several days before the military moved in.

    Siddiqui said Abdul Aziz would be released after posting 200,000 rupees ($2,500) bail in an anti-terrorism court.

    Weapons found

    After troops took control of the complex they say they recovered weapons, including machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades, AK-47 rifles, landmines and hand grenades.

    Abdul Rashid Ghazi, Aziz's brother, was among those killed in the assault.

    Students of the Red Mosque had come into conflict with the authorities in Islamabad a number of times before the siege.

    Music shops and a group of Chinese women accused of prostitution had been attacked by students, while the leaders had called for the overthrow of Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan's then-president.

    The raid on the complex, which included religious schools, was followed by a surge in violence across Pakistan.

    Nearly 800 people were killed in the following four months, many in suicide attacks and bomb blasts.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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