The Pakistani Supreme Court has returned the country’s top judge to power, overruling the suspension meted out by President Musharraf, which ignited a pro-democracy protest movement this spring. Charges of nepotism and abuse of power against Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry were called "illegal" by the court.
Lawyers who took to the streets after Chaudhry's suspension charged that they were a poorly disguised effort by the embattled president to control the courts. The defeat comes as Musharraf is being challenged on another flank by Islamic militants. Military attacks on hard-liners holed up in a mosque last week created a tide of suicide bombings and militant mobilization.