Imposition of emergency in Pakistan is a ’sharp setback’ for democracy: US

November 14th, 2007 - 8:23 am ICT by admin  
“A state of emergency would be a sharp setback for Pakistani democracy and takes Pakistan off the path toward civilian rule,” US State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said.

“President Musharraf has stated repeatedly that he will step down as Chief of Army Staff before re-taking the presidential oath of office and has promised to hold elections by January 15th,” he said, adding, “We expect him to uphold these commitments and urge him to do so immediately.”

Stating that the US stands with the people of Pakistan in supporting a democratic process and in countering violent extremism, McCormack urged all parties to work together to complete the transition to democracy and civilian rule “without violence or delay.”

Meanwhile, the CNN quoted US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice saying that the imposition of martial law was “highly regrettable”.

In August 2007, when speculations were rife that Musharraf could impose emergency in the country in the wake of growing protests, Rice had flown to Islamabad and had reportedly deterred him from taking such steps.

Meanwhile, the European Union has condemned the imposition of martial law in Pakistan. (ANI)

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