Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

IN THE PAPERS

'Caution, another Cast Lead lies ahead'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Rising into the ranks of Haute Couture

Read more

DEBATE

Gaza: How to Stop the Spiral? Israel Readies For Ground Offensive

Read more

DEBATE

Gaza: How to Stop the Spiral? Israel Readies For Ground Offensive (part 2)

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

A thin line between fact-checking and propaganda in Gaza social media coverage

Read more

#THE 51%

Sweden: A Feminist's Paradise?

Read more

FOCUS

Ireland's missing babies cast light on dark history

Read more

WEB NEWS

World Cup 2014: Germany-Brazil inspires the Web

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Boutros-Ghali: 'I wanted to reform the UN'

Read more

  • Amazon snubs French free delivery ban with one-cent charge

    Read more

  • In Pictures: Petrol station hit by Hamas rockets

    Read more

  • Manhunt as FIFA partner flees Rio hotel to avoid arrest

    Read more

  • Video: Living in Tel Aviv, under threat of rocket attack

    Read more

  • Video: Palestinians fear full Israeli military offensive in Gaza

    Read more

  • US prepared to negotiate Gaza ceasefire, Obama says

    Read more

  • French companies will have to accept anonymous CVs

    Read more

  • Ukrainian forces close in on Donetsk

    Read more

  • Germany asks US intelligence station chief to leave country

    Read more

  • Video: Muslims in China confront obstacles to Ramadan fasting

    Read more

  • Tour de France passes WWI Chemin des Dames battlefield

    Read more

  • Senegalese man awarded French visa in gay marriage debate

    Read more

  • Foiled French jihadist ‘targeted Louvre and Eiffel Tower’

    Read more

  • Obama in Texas to urge congressional action on child migrant crisis

    Read more

  • Iraq’s heritage 'in danger' from ISIS militants

    Read more

Musharraf faces impeachment threat

©

Latest update : 2008-08-07

Pakistan's ruling coalition agreed in principle to launch proceedings to impeach President Pervez Musharraf. Pakistani PM Gilani will attend opening ceremonies for the Olympics after Musharraf cancelled his departure to Beijing.

Pakistan faced fresh political turmoil on Thursday after officials said the ruling coalition had agreed to impeach President Pervez Musharraf, a vital US ally in the "war on terror."
  
The agreement came after three days of marathon talks between coalition leaders Asif Ali Zardari, the widower of slain former prime minister Benazir Bhutto, and Nawaz Sharif, another ex-premier.
  
"The coalition parties have agreed in principle to launch an impeachment motion against President Musharraf," a senior coalition official told AFP on condition of anonymity.
  
The government had summoned the national assembly, or lower house of parliament, to sit on August 11 but it was not immediately known when any moves to start impeachment proceedings would begin, the official added.
  
Spokesmen for the two main parties in the coalition said a formal announcement was due to be made later Thursday.
  
Musharraf cancelled his departure to Beijing -- where he was to attend to the opening of the Olympic Games on Friday -- shortly after news of the impeachment plan emerged.
  
His place at the opening ceremony will be taken by Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, the foreign ministry said.
  
Musharraf's allies have said he will fight any attempt to topple him. As president he is able to dissolve parliament and call new elections, or even declare a state of emergency.
  
The former commando seized power in a military coup in October 1999 and ruled nuclear-armed Pakistan for eight years with the backing of the United States, which has counted him as a key ally since the September 11 attacks.
  
But his popularity slumped after he ousted the country's chief justice and imposed emergency rule in November 2007 to prevent any challenges to his re-election as president.
  
Musharraf stepped down as army chief that month, and the parties of Bhutto and Sharif subsequently trounced his allies in general elections in February.
  
Coalition sources said the agreement to impeach came when Sharif assured Zardari that he could count on the support of some former members of the PML-N who are currently members of a pro-Musharraf party.
  
"There was a major breakthrough in the talks late last night. We have agreed to impeach the president," a senior member of Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party said.
  
An official from Bhutto's Pakistan People's Party, now led by her widower Zardari, confirmed the decision.
  
The parties have also agreed to restore judges sacked by Musharraf under emergency rule but were still working out the details, party sources said.
  
They said that a charge sheet on Musharraf's position and performance as president would be drawn up and submitted to parliament to be signed by at least half of all MPs in the coming days.
  
The speaker of the national assembly, or lower house of parliament, would then notify Musharraf and ask him to defend his position within seven to 15 days, they said.
  
The coalition had been split by the twin issues of what to do about Musharraf and how to carry out their pledge to reinstate the judges.
  
The rift had effectively paralysed the government, which is under huge US pressure over its efforts to negotiate with Taliban and Al-Qaeda militants. It is also facing public anger over rising food and fuel prices.

Date created : 2008-08-07

Comments

COMMENT(S)