US hopes Pakistan will have a free and fair election

January 3rd, 2008 - 12:18 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Benazir Bhutto

Washington, Jan 3 (ANI): After Pakistan Election Commisiions decision to postpone January 8 polls, US now hopes that the Pakistani people will be allowed to have a free and fair election where there is the widest possible participation.
“Hopefully in the next few weeks, the political parties will be able to campaign freely and make their case, and then the voters can decide,” White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said.
Asked whether the US was worried that the election might not be free and fair, Perino replied: “We have no indication that it wouldnt be, but of course, well continue to monitor.”
Perino later said that she was unaware of charges made by Benazir Bhuttos allies that she was killed as she planned to go public just hours before her death with evidence of plans to rig the vote.
Meanwhile, the Bush Administration has decided to go along with the Pakistan Election Commission (ECs) decision to postpone the polls from January 8 to February 18.
“Its important that there is a firm date for elections. We hope that all the political parties will work together to ensure a free and fair election,” National Security Council spokesman Gordon Johndroe said.
Earlier, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice briefed President George W Bush on “all the contacts between the US Government and various political officials and different parties in Pakistan,” Perino said.
Perino said that the US saw no need for a United Nations investigation into Bhuttos slaying because Britains Scotland Yard would lead the current probe.
“Scotland Yard being in the lead of this investigation is appropriate and necessary and we dont see a need for an investigation beyond that at this time,” the Daily Times quoted Perino, as saying. (ANI)

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