With Pakistani authorities set to postpone next week’s election the two main opposition parties have joined forces to demand the vote go ahead as planned. President Pervez Musharraf’s party says it favours delaying the poll after the unrest sparked by the assassination of opposition leader Benazir Bhutto.
Musharrah’s opponents and some analysts say putting back the election could lead to new violence. Musharraf is scheduled to give a televised address on the issue today.
Bhutto’s widower, Asif Ali Zardari, says a postponement would be undemocratic: “In Afghanistan there is war, they still have elections, in Sri Lanka they have constant war but they still have elections. In Yemen they have war but they have elections, so many countries and examples in Africa, so this is a lame duck excuse.”
Nearly 60 people died in the disturbances that followed Bhutto’s murder. The situation has now calmed but remains volatile. It is still not clear who was behind the attack on her convoy.