After 5 years away, ex-President Musharraf announces return to Pakistan
March 16, 2013 -- Updated 2322 GMT (0722 HKT)
Activists of the All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) watch former president Musharraf give a press conference March 1, 2013.
- Pervez Musharraf says he'll fly to Karachi on March 24 to lead his party in elections
- He's been in self-imposed exile since resigning as president in 2008
- Pakistani authorities confiscated his property; he's accused of not protecting Benazir Bhutto
(CNN) -- Five years after he resigned as Pakistan's president and left the South Asian nation, Pervez Musharraf will return to the country intent on leading his party in upcoming elections, he announced Saturday.
Musharraf plans to fly on a commercial airline into Karachi on March 24, then attend a rally attended by 50,000 people including more than 200 Pakistani expatriates from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates, he said in a statement.
He plans to lead his political party into Pakistan's general elections, which are slated for May.
Whether the rest of Pakistan welcomes him back, including the authorities now heading the country, remains to be seen.
Ex-president returning to Pakistan
Pervez Musharraf on Osama bin Laden
Musharraf: 'I will go back'
In 1999, the then chief of Pakistan's army became its president in a bloodless military coup. He remained in power until resigning in 2008 -- a period that included the U.S.-led invasion of neighborhood Afghanistan, starting a sweeping international war on terror -- then went into self-imposed exile in London and Dubai.
A few months before he left office, Benazir Bhutto -- who served two stints, in the late 1980s and 1990s, as Pakistan's first elected female prime minister -- was killed in a gun-suicide bomb attack as she was wrapping up a campaign rally in Rawalpindi.
This attack, coming two months after she survived an assassination attempt in Karachi, fueled criticism that Musharraf had not done enough to protect Bhutto's life despite numerous threats. The former military ruler has denied having anything to do with Bhutto's killing.
He's been targeted by Pakistan authorities, who in August 2012 confiscated his property and froze his bank account. A politician and prosecutor, according to media reports, have said Musharraf will be arrested as soon as he steps foot in Pakistan.
Part of complete coverage on
September 18, 2014 -- Updated 0500 GMT (1300 HKT)
China's Xi Jinping and India's Narendra Modi, leaders of the most populous nations face similar challenges. Can they learn from each other?
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 2236 GMT (0636 HKT)
The U.S. is not returning combat troops to Iraq, President Barack Obama insists.
September 18, 2014 -- Updated 0301 GMT (1101 HKT)
This is "Flames of War," a slick and ominous new video from the ISIS media center.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 0038 GMT (0838 HKT)
A man abducted alongside killed U.S. journalist Steven Sotloff tells CNN that no one from the U.S. government has tried to talk with him.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1508 GMT (2308 HKT)
Mulatu Astatke is the founding father of ethio-jazz: a fusion of Ethiopian music with western jazz.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1311 GMT (2111 HKT)
Have you been to these? The global museum list, released Tuesday, ranks 25 of the world's best museums.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1703 GMT (0103 HKT)
iOS 8, the latest version of Apple's mobile operating system, comes with new features that you'll enjoy.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 0927 GMT (1727 HKT)
Psychedelic drugs are being researched as a potential treatment for conditions ranging from anxiety to tobacco and alcohol addiction.
September 18, 2014 -- Updated 0142 GMT (0942 HKT)
It's a surfer's paradise -- but Diah Rahayu is out on her own when it comes to professional women's wave-riding in Bali.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1004 GMT (1804 HKT)
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
Today's five most popular stories