Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Friday, September 21, 2007

Former exiled Pakistani Prime Minister announces her return to Pakistan

Benazir Bhutto, the exiled chairwoman of the Pakistan People’s Party and former prime minister, announced her plans to return to the country in order to promote change through democracy in a Washington Post op-ed piece published on Thursday.

Bhutto proclaimed the most central issue facing her country is extremism, but notes that, historically, religious fundamentalism has never dominated political consciousness. She further emphasized that Pakistan, at heart, is a moderate nation.

She also addressed her conversations with General Pervez Musharraf that have occurred over the past several months by maintaining that the meetings were intended to guarantee free elections in Pakistan. She further added that “[m]y dialogue with Musharraf aims to move the country forward from a dictatorship that has failed to stop the tribal areas from becoming havens for terrorists. The extremists are even spreading their tentacles into Pakistan's cities.”

Bhutto also touched upon the recent amendment to the constitution: “Last week brought a fresh challenge. Just days ago, Pakistan's election commission arbitrarily amended the constitutional provision regarding the eligibility of a person competent to contest for the office of president. As the constitution can be amended only through a two-thirds majority in Parliament, a judicial hornet's nest has been stirred, “she said.

For the full editorial, click here.

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