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Gilani prefers jail to asking Switzerland to re-open graft cases against Zardari

March 16, 2012 - Islamabad

Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has said that he would go to jail rather than obey a court order to ask Switzerland to re-open alleged money-laundering cases against President Asif Ali Zardari.

"If I write a letter it will be a violation of the Constitution, which is treason and which carries the death sentence," the Express Tribune quoted Gilani, as saying at the Islamia University Bahawalpur (IUB) convocation.

"If I don't write, I will be convicted for contempt, the punishment for which is six months' imprisonment. It's better to face six months' imprisonment than face the death sentence," Gilani added and few people in the audience shouted "do not write, do not write".

His statement came after the Pakistan Supreme Court ordered Gilani to write a letter to Swiss authorities asking them to re-open corruption cases against Zardari by March 21.

Gilani reiterated the same stance while addressing another public gathering at a railway ground in Mailsi, Vehari district.

He said he would be a traitor if he wrote a letter to Swiss courts against Zardari.

He added that he is not scared of being imprisoned as he had been "forcefully" jailed many times for "merely giving jobs to people".


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