Pak edging closer to the abyss: NYT editorial

March 1st, 2009 - 1:02 pm ICT by ANI  

Nawaz Sharif

New York, Mar.1 (ANI): Though no one wants to say it out loud, Pakistan is edging ever closer to the abyss, thanks to factors like threats from extremists, an unraveling economy, battling civilian leaders and tensions with nuclear rival India.
Quoting from a report appearing this week in The Atlantic Council, the New York Times says that the council has warned that Pakistans stability is imperiled and that the time to change course is fast running out.
In an editorial, the paper says that with Pakistans Supreme Court adding new fuel to an exisiting fire by upholding a ruling that bars opposition leader Nawaz Sharif and his brother Shahbaz Sharif from holding elected office, the political pitch in that country has been queered further.
The Sharifs have alleged that the apex court is a tool of President Asif Ali Zardari. They are also backing anti-government lawyers who are demanding the reinstatement of former Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry who was dismissed by President General Musharraf in 2007.
Zardari may have pledged to unite Pakistan, but according to the editorial, he is doing everything but that.
The NYT describes both Zardari and Sharif as flawed leaders, and warns that for Pakistans democracy to survive, a robust opposition must be allowed to flourish and participate peacefully in the countrys political life.
That, it says, includes finding a way for Sharif to run for office.
It also means Pakistan must get serious about tackling its problems, including the fight against Al Qaeda and the Taliban.
Pakistanis need to understand that this is their fight, not just Americas. There was a time when Messrs. Zardari and Sharif pledged to work together for the good of Pakistan. Their country is in mortal danger.And, they need to find a way to work together to save the country, the editorial concludes. (ANI)

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