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Zardari returns to Pakistan amid crisis with military

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Zardari returns to Pakistan amid crisis with military

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Pakistan’s President Asif Ali Zardari has returned home from a trip to Dubai amid growing tension between his civilian government and the military.

While analysts say a military coup is unlikely, the main parliamentary opposition is calling for early elections.

“For the country, for democracy and the rule of law, it is time to remove the government in a democratic way to make free and fair elections possible,” said spokesman Ahsan Iqbal of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz.

The latest crisis centres on a disputed memo, allegedly from Zardari’s administration, seeking US help in reining in the generals.

The West is watching events in the nuclear-armed nation where authorities are tackling Islamic militancy, a weak economy and widespread poverty.