Pakistan elections

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Sharif Heads for Victory in Pakistan

Ex-PM looks set to cruise to 3rd term in landmark elections

(Newser) - Pakistan's former prime minister appears headed to return to the office for a third term as the restive country makes its first democratic transition since 1970, reports the New York Times . Early returns this morning show Nawaz Sharif's party easily securing enough seats to form a government—besting... More »

Could Pakistan Soon Quit the War on Terror?

Leading PM candidate Nawaz Sharif says he'd do just that

(Newser) - Pakistan's leading candidate for prime minister has said he'll escort the country out of the US-led "war on terror" if elected on Saturday. Nawaz Sharif tells the BBC , "We have to" quit the effort, arguing that the move would be a step toward peace both in... More »

Taliban Bombs Own Allies at Pakistan Rally

Protection racket suspected after blast kills 20

(Newser) - A bomb tore through an election rally in Pakistan's tribal belt yesterday, killing at least 20 people and wounding dozens more in the deadliest incident yet in the violence-plagued run-up to this Saturday's election. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the blast, but while other attacks have targeted liberal,... More »

Pakistani Gunmen Kill 21 in Karachi

Shootings occur during election, may be gang-related

(Newser) - Gunmen have killed at least 21 Pakistanis in Karachi today in a hail of bullets that accompanies a special election to replace a lawmaker who was slain two months ago. The violence may be linked to the city's two main political parties, both of which are seeking the open seat,... More »

Pakistani Democracy Is Achievable: Bhutto Widower

Zardari: stakes high in Saturday's elections

(Newser) - Pakistan, still reeling from Benazir Bhutto's assassination and Pervez Musharraf's resignation, can get a grip on terrorists and win the fight against dictatorship, insists Bhutto’s widower in a Washington Post op-ed outlining the stakes in Saturday's election. Asif Ali Zardari, who’s running for president, vows to continue his... More »

Pakistan's Sharif Faces Charges of Corruption

Prosecutors go after former PM days before presidential vote

(Newser) - Nawaz Sharif, whose party recently pulled out of Pakistan's ruling coalition, is about to face corruption charges, Pakistani prosecutors said today. A two-time prime minister whom Pervez Musharraf deposed in 1999, Sharif will be charged with money laundering and loan defaults, as well as "the accumulation of wealth beyond... More »

Musharraf Will Quit Tomorrow, Flee: Mag

Presidential spokesman denies allegations

(Newser) - Pakistan President Musharraf will likely resign tomorrow, a former Musharraf aide told Newsweek, and flee to Saudi Arabia for three months of exile. Pakistan's top military commanders are aware of the news, but Musharraf's camp officially denies the story. "Your source is a liar. The information you have is... More »

Bhutto's Party to Name Next Pakistani PM

Shariz allies drop candidate as 'goodwill gesture' to PPP

(Newser) - The party of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto said today it will name Pakistan's next premier this weekend, AFP reports. After former PM Nawaz Sharif's party pulled their  candidate as a "goodwill gesture," the PPP candidate will likely be sworn in Tuesday without much debate, the AP reports.... More »

Bhutto's Party Delays PM Decision

Meeting ends without expected nom; Bhutto widower will decide

(Newser) - Benazir Bhutto's party deferred its choice for PM candidate today, adding greater uncertainty to Pakistan's volatile political landscape, Bloomberg reports. Makhdoom Amin Fahim, the Pakistan People's Party's No. 2 and a longtime Bhutto loyalist, had been expected to take the top job today. But a meeting of the party's newly... More »

Bush Push for Musharraf Angers Pakistan

Media turns on US as Washington supports beleaguered president

(Newser) - His political future might be in doubt, but Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf is still receiving forceful backing from the Bush administration after his party's drubbing in parliamentary elections—and it's angering Pakistanis, reports the New York Times. "I’ve never seen such an irrational, impractical move on the part... More »

Nawaz Sharif Says He'll Run for Parliament

Ex-PM plots return to political power after election victory

(Newser) - Nawaz Sharif will stand in a special election for a vacant seat in Pakistan's parliament, he said yesterday, opening the way for his return to political power. The two-time prime minister, whose Muslim League is set to form a coalition government with Benazir Bhutto's Pakistan People's Party after last week's... More »

Besieged Musharraf in 'Dangerous Mindset'

Pakistani prez 'sulking' after election defeat

(Newser) - Is Pervez Musharraf paranoid, or is everyone out to get him? After his party's hammering in this week's election, the answer seems to be both, the Guardian reports. "He's been sulking," said a senior party official of the Pakistani president. "He's retreated into a mental bunker. It's... More »

Musharraf Pushes Swiss to Prosecute Foe

Alleges Bhutto widower stashed $55M in Swiss bank account

(Newser) - As the battle to control Pakistan heats up, President Pervez Musharraf's lawyers have asked the Swiss government to prosecute Asif Ali Zardari over decade-old corruption charges. Zardari, the widower of Benazir Bhutto and leader of the victorious Pakistan People's Party, is charged with hiding $55 million in kickbacks in a... More »

Musharraf Opposition Seek to Build Alliance

Parties of Bhutto, Sharif look to each other, smaller partners

(Newser) - The party of fallen Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto is moving toward an alliance with longtime rival Nawaz Sharif after a strong showing in Monday's parliamentary election, Reuters reports. A coalition of the two parties, along with smaller independents, could control enough of the legislature to oust President Pervez Musharraf,... More »

Musharraf Plans to Stay Prez Despite Loss

Hopes to forge alliance and aid 'in a positive way'

(Newser) - Pervez Musharraf wants to stay president despite his party's crushing defeat in Pakistan's national election, he told the Wall Street Journal today. He said he hopes to aid the country's transition to democracy and cooperate with the next prime minister. "We have to move forward in a way that... More »

Bhutto Loyalist Frontrunner to Be Pakistan PM

Musharraf's party concedes defeat after drubbing at ballot box

(Newser) - President Pervez Musharraf's party has admitted defeat after losing a resounding two-thirds of its seats in parliament in Pakistan's parliamentary elections. Although final results are still not in, Benazir Bhutto's Pakistan People's Party and Nawaz Sharif's Muslim League have crushed the president's faction, which placed a distant third. The likely... More »

Pakistani Opposition Claims Win

Leading Musharraf party members lose in early returns

(Newser) - Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf was trounced in a national election today as opposition leaders declared victory against militant rule and the Bush administration, the New York Times reports. An unofficial tally projected victory and 110 seats for the Pakistan People's Party, and 100 seats for Nawaz Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League-N... More »

Pakistanis Await Poll Returns

Voter turnout light, international observers expect rigging

(Newser) - Polls have closed in Pakistani elections long-delayed by the assassination of Benazir Bhutto, as fears of violence kept voter turnout down to an estimated 15%, Reuters reports. Heavy security, with more than 470,000 police and soldiers deployed at polls nationwide, did little to assuage citizens' anxiety as voting proceeded... More »

Bhutto Widower Warns of Pakistan Election Backlash

People 'on the warpath,' Asif Ali Zardari warns

(Newser) - The Pakistani government's suspected plans to disrupt tomorrow's elections will trigger widespread violence and the possible collapse of the nation, warned the widower of assassinated leader Benazir Bhutto. "People are absolutely on the warpath" and will take to the streets if the election is rigged, Asif Ali Zardari told... More »

Mass Rigging Charged Ahead of Pakistan Vote

Bhutto's party appears unstoppable but some fear fraud will rob victory

(Newser) - Pakistan's postponed parliamentary elections will finally take place on Monday, but allegations are flying that Pervez Musharraf's party has already rigged the vote. Pakistan's intelligence agencies have "pre-stuffed" ballot boxes, confiscated voter ID cards, and appointed party apparatchiks in key rural constituencies, a retired senior intelligence officer told the... More »

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