Nawaz Sharif, the former prime minister whom Pervez Musharraf deposed in his 1999 coup, is planning to return to Pakistan within days. Reuters reports that Sharif, who flew to Islamabad in September only to be promptly deported to Saudi Arabia, might be back in Pakistan in time to file for parliamentary elections. Musharraf is said to have assented to Sharif's return when he met with Saudi King Abdullah this week.
Musharraf's surprise visit to Saudi Arabia on Tuesday heightened speculation that the general might be reaching out to his long-time foe after sending him into exile and co-opting his political party. Whether the two men have made a deal is unclear, but markets in Pakistan were buoyed by the news: stocks in Karachi rose 1.4% after Sharif's expected return was announced.