Pakistan votes

Good morning from London, the big international news today is the people of Pakistan voting in a crucial parliamentary election overshadowed by violence and fears of fraud. If the count goes as usual, initial results should be announced about the time we are on air, with a good idea of the final results beginning to come in around 2200 gmt. Should we talk about the elections or wait until tomorrow when we’ll have a better idea of what has happened?

Here in the UK the top story is the nationalisation of Northern Rock. The bank’s troubles are tied to the subprime lending problems in the US and the global economic downturn, which we discussed last month, but could they herald a geopolitical sea change in the world economy, as Martin Jacques argues in The Guardian, that will be more fundamental than that brought by the oil shocks of the 1970s?

As expected, and as we discussed on Friday, Kosovo declared its independence from Serbia on Sunday. Foreign ministers from a divided European Union meet today to discuss the matter, with domestic concerns a feature for many states. How should the international community respond?

(As an aside, Global Voices has a roundup of global blog comment on the issue that’s worth a glance.)

And like the US leadership, let’s pay a quick visit to Africa: Kenya’s continuing election crisis has reached such a stage that Condoleezza Rice is in town trying to sort it out; President Bush is also in Africa, and while in Tanzania he called for free and fair” elections to be held in Zimbabwe.

And here’s a quick thought from Justin Webb on the importance of Osama Bin Laden. Has Al Qaeda outgrown him? Judging by the news, western involvement in Afghanistan certainly seems focused elsewhere, but we can rely on John McCain to “follow him to the gates of Hell” if he has to.

A reader has written in response to Newshour’s debate on Pakistan, one part of which was a suggestion that “none of the parties are offering genuine solutions to the poverty which afflicts millions of Pakistanis.”

Trevor writes:
“I’m sure that apart from the word “Pakistan” this text could apply to many countries around the world. It certainly seems to apply to the Philippines.
“Perhaps it is no coincidence that both the Pakistan and the Philppine governments are loyal partners in the US “war against terror”… As indeed is the UK (which is perhaps also one of the most badly run countries of northern Europe).
“Don’t you think the BBC (world servicce) should start seriously questioning the cost of being a key US ally?”

Well, should we?

And what cities should be on a global edition of Monopoly? You can vote online now – which city would you say must be on the board? Not that I’m sure your vote will count – are the makers of the game going to go with a popular vote that puts Istanbul and Montreal top of the list? As fine as they may be, I’m not sure they’re the Park Lane and Mayfair of international cities.

8 Responses to “Pakistan votes”

  1. 1 A.R.Shams
    February 18, 2008 at 11:04

    The manner in which a very few political parties are participating in the 2008 election doesn’t seem could be political end to have solved the key problems of the country e.g. genuine solutions to the poverty which afflicts millions of Pakistanis.

    So, this election doesn’t seem worthly of acceptability for the nation as a whole.

  2. February 18, 2008 at 12:45

    I’d love to see Baghdad being put on Monopoly Peter. But will anyone be interested in buying it ?! :). With my love ! Yours forever, Lubna !

  3. February 18, 2008 at 12:54

    I personally believe that President Pervaiz Musharraf has done a great job. The overall election went really peaceful. It’s a victory for the President.

  4. 4 A.R.Shams
    February 18, 2008 at 13:14

    Many people are heard expressing their views whisperingly, “Such election may not be accepted by the majority people on the country because to them it seems just a sort of selection, not an election, in real sense.”

  5. February 18, 2008 at 14:27

    As rightly expected,this vote will change the present scenario of the country.

    According to the partial result broadcasting by different news channels PPP and N league are leading all other parties including king party which showing no valuable position.

    In such circumstances,we can easily predict that PPP and Muslim League(N) would appeared in the parliment as a major political parties and in position to form a stable coalition government.

    There is a issue,may be described disputed between both the parties that is retoration of those judges fired by Musharraf by imposing emergency in the country.

    The hope that PPP would be convinced by its ally in regard to reinstate judges of the apex court but it would be untolrable for the president who have 58.B as a weapon.

    On the other hand, impeachement motion may be produce before the newly elected parliment against president Musharraf which can kicke him out.

    new president will come,some reasonable amendments be made in the constitution to closing the door on army enterence for ever.

    These changes are expected and essential.

  6. February 19, 2008 at 08:35

    Army can never be kicked out and we should respect those who protect our country. At least they are better than our so called ‘Feudal-Democrats’.

    President Pervaiz Musharraf has done so much for the Country. On the other hand those who are the culprits with hundreds of cases in National Accountability Buearu are expected to make Government. We can never imagine good governance from them.

    We should appreciate the President. He has finally showed that he is sincere by helding FREE & FAIR elections.

  7. 7 A.R.Shams
    February 19, 2008 at 13:10

    Now the question is who will lead the parliamentary. PPPP is in the lack real leadership after Benazir’s departure on being assassinated. PML(N) finds almost none to lead them in assembly to head the government because Nawaz Sharif’s nomination paper was rejected by Pervez Musharraf’s government.

    For Pervez Musharrf Nawaz’s party taking over the government may not be pleasing for various reasons.

    What would happen next to the democracy in Pakistan is unpredictable at the moment. Let’s see what happens next.

  8. August 16, 2008 at 20:13

    I personally believe that President Pervez Musharraf has done a great job to handle the Pakistan.


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