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Pakistan Suspends Execution Of Murder Convict

A Pakistani court has reportedly postponed the hanging of a convicted murderer in what would have been the country's first civilian execution in six years.

Shoaib Sarwar was convicted in 1998.

He was set to be hanged in Rawalpindi's Adiyala prison on September 18 following orders issued by another court last week.

But prosecution branch officials were quoted as saying the execution has been stayed until October 13.

Pakistan has had a de facto moratorium on civilian hangings since 2008.

Only one person -- a soldier -- has been executed since then.

Rights campaign group Amnesty International estimates that there are more than 8,000 prisoners on death row in Pakistan.

European Union officials indicated last year that if Pakistan resumed executions, it could jeopardize a preferential trade deal with the bloc.

Based on reporting by AFP and dpa