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Nov-08-2007 12:03printcomments

Pakistan's Musharraf Will Hold Elections

This comes after a discussion between Musharraf and U.S. President George W. Bush over the situation on Wednesday.

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) - The news that Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf will go ahead with elections was greeted as welcome news to the United States, White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said today.

Musharraf announced that the general elections would be held by February 15th next year, and that decisions in future would be taken in consultation with all concerned and in the best national interest.

"The issues which forced imposition of emergency would be addressed and resolved at the earliest to help create conducive conditions for completion of third phase of transition," he added.

Perino said, "We think it is a good thing that President Musharraf has clarified the election date for the Pakistani people."

Musharraf, who was re-elected as Pakistan's president in early October, also said that he would quit as the army chief before taking oath as president. This comes after a discussion between Musharraf and U.S. President George W. Bush over the situation on Wednesday.

It is reported that Bush told him to hold elections as scheduled and quit as army chief.

"My message was very plain, very easy to understand. And that is: The United States wants you to have the elections as scheduled and take your uniform off," Bush told reporters. "You can't be the president and the head of the military at the same time," he added.

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Musharraf declared the country's state of emergency Saturday, he also issued a provisional constitutional order that cited increases in extremist activity and terrorist attacks and abuse by the judiciary in the country.

During the crackdown, hundreds of opposition members and attorneys were dragged away from demonstrations by force.

Musharraf sya he remains determined to complete the next phase of return to full democracy in the country. He said political activity has already been set in motion for this purpose and to maintain effective governance in the country and to take forceful action against militancy, violence and terrorism.

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Neal Feldman November 9, 2007 10:14 am (Pacific time)

Oh he will hold elections.. rigged elections, once everyone who will vote against him is dead or in prison the polls will open. Such wonderful allies we have. With friends like these who needs enemies? Isn't he also the guy sheltering Osama bin Laden? Why are we threatening Iran when we should be attacking Pakistan? Oh, right, hr has nukes, like N Korea, making him untouchable by the US military. And folks wonder why Iran wants nukes? For self-defense against the US of course. It is obvious! Ah well...

Nory King November 9, 2007 8:38 am (Pacific time)

I'll believe it when I see it.

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