Bhutto Says Power-Sharing Deal Is Close

Talks with Musharraf could be finalized in next few hours
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 4, 2007 10:12 AM CDT
Former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, centre, speaks at a press conference in London, Thursday Oct. 4, 2007, at which she said that there was no deal yet in power-sharing talks between her party...   (Associated Press)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – A power-sharing deal between former Pakistani PM Benazir Bhutto and embattled President Pervez Musharraf is back on, Bhutto said today in an about-face from yesterday, when she declared that talks were stalled and her party would boycott Saturday's presidential elections. In exchange for amnesty and a well-worded national reconciliation ordinance, Bhutto's party will not withdraw from parliament, she now tells the BBC.

“We are optimistic today, but I cannot say everything is finalized," said Bhutto. The support of her party, Pakistan's largest, would bolster Musharraf's badly damaged credibility. To enter into a power-sharing arrangement, Bhutto wants amnesty on corruption charges, an amendment allowing her a third term as PM, and Musharraf to suspend his right to sack the PM.