Zardari has only a 50 percent chance of surviving in power next year: ReportDecember 27th, 2008 - 2:48 pm ICT by ANI
London, Dec 27 (ANI): A year after former premier Benazir Bhutto was assassinated, her husband Asif Ali Zardari became the Pakistan President, is faced with growing radicalization and uncertainty.
Looking back, the events of the previous 12 months still appear extraordinary. But as Pakistan and its leader prepare for 2009, the year ahead seems certain to be no less dramatic, The Independent reported.
Confronted by the rising threat from militants, a faltering economy, an unsettled dispute with the legal community and, most recently, a stand-off with India, many doubt whether Zardari who came to power so unexpectedly will survive in his position another 12 months.
I would put his chances only at 50-50. I can be only half sure. If there is another attack on India [by Pakistan-based militants] then I think he will be ousted from power, said Farzana Shaikh, an analyst at Chatham House.
Some analysts say that there are signs of plots against Zardari emerging both within the establishment and his own party. Much will depend on the view of the US and its incoming President Barack Obama.
The biggest challenge to Zardari is Zardari himself, said Ayesha Siddiqa, a strategic affairs analyst and author.
The greatest problem is his inability to run the government and to assess what the threat is. And adding to this image of haplessness, of course, is that a year after Bhuttos death, Pakistanis are no closer to finding out who killed her, The Independent quoted her, as saying.
To deal with terrorism effectively, Zardari has to deal with the military a parallel institution which is something that no civilian leader in Pakistan has ever been able to do, said Vernon Hewitt, a South Asia expert at Bristol University.
And the standoff with India in the aftermath of the Mumbai terror attacks will only strengthen the standing of the Pakistani military. The Independent reported.
Zardari has vowed to bring the accused to justice once he is provided with convincing evidence. Several LeT facilities have been closed and some members detained.
But the President is forced to walk a perilously thin line; it remains unclear to what extent the army-controlled intelligence agency retains links with LeT and how far it would allow the government to dismantle it. (ANI)
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