25 August 2008

Dump Musharraf... everything's fine

Well... not quite.

-- ISLAMABAD (AFP) -- Pakistan's fragile ruling coalition was at risk of being pulled apart on Monday, setting the stage for a major political showdown two weeks before the country's lawmakers choose a new president.

Former premier Nawaz Sharif, head of the second-largest party in the coalition, has laid down a Monday deadline for the reinstatement of judges sacked by Pervez Musharraf, who resigned as president last week.
And the political squabbles are the least of their worries...
The political bickering has also underlined concerns for Pakistan's stability as the country tries to keep a lid on Islamic militants from the Taliban and Al-Qaeda.

Nearly 100 people were killed in suicide bombings last week alone. Pakistan Taliban say the bombings were carried out in response to a military campaign against them -- and have threatened more attacks to come.

UPDATE: A bag of feral cats...

...as Sharif pulls the plug on coalition.
-- ISLAMABAD -- Former Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif pulled his party out of the ruling coalition on Monday, deepening a political crisis that has diverted government attention from pressing security and economic problems.

The move came just a week after the coalition parties had celebrated the resignation of President Pervez Musharraf in the face of the coalition's threat to impeach him.

The PPP is reluctant to restore the judges partly because of concern the deposed chief justice might take up challenges to an amnesty granted to Mr. Zardari and other party leaders from graft charges last year, analysts say.

Before Mr. Musharraf sacked them, the judges — the former chief justice in particular — were quite willing to challenge his government on the legality of various decisions, a tendency the PPP may not view with enthusiasm now that it governs.

RELATED: A little closer to home...
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