Musharraf Backs Down From Emergency Rule

Under pressure, ruling general instead moves toward elections
By Heather McPherson,  Newser User
Posted Aug 9, 2007 12:53 PM CDT
Musharraf Backs Down From Emergency Rule
In this picture released by the Press information department Pakistan President Gen. Pervez Musharraf, talks with flood victims in Turbat, Pakistan, Friday, July 6, 2007. Assassination attempts and rising political pressures threaten Musharraf's position atop a nuclear-armed nation struggling to quell...   (Associated Press)

After wide speculation that he would invoke emergency measures to deal with mounting violence and instability, Pakistan's president put out word today that he will stay the course on elections, Reuters reports. Beset by Islamic militants, constitutional challenges and declining poll numbers, Pervez Musharraf was thought to be on the verge of delaying elections and curbing media rights.

Condoleeza Rice called Musharraf overnight; the White House has urged the besieged general, who has been a lynchpin in US anti-terror operations, not to abandon democratic rule. But the relationship is strained; Musharraf has heavily criticized for not taking more action against al-Qaeda and Taliban forces operating within his borders. (Read more Pakistan stories.)

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