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Monday, August 25, 2008

Pakistan coalition dissolves due to inability to reach agreement on judges
Abigail Salisbury at 2:34 PM ET

[JURIST] Former Pakistani prime minister and Pakistan Muslim League - Nawaz (PML-N) [party website] head Nawaz Sharif [JURIST news archive] on Monday followed through with threats [JURIST report] to withdraw his party from the coalition government. Sharif had set Friday as the deadline for the PML-N and the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) to agree on the reinstatement of all of the judges ousted last year by President Pervez Musharraf [official website; JURIST news archive], who recently resigned [press release; JURIST report] from office. Sharif has focused his push for reinstatement on former Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry [JURIST news archive], and has said that he considers the Supreme Court as currently constituted to be illegitimate. Reuters India has more. AP has additional coverage.

Prior to Musharraf's resignation, Sharif had called for the leader to be tried for treason [JURIST report], labeling him a traitor disloyal to Pakistan and saying he should be punished for the "damage" done to the country in the years since his military coup [BBC backgrounder] unseated Sharif in 1999. In 2000, Sharif was convicted for his involvement in an attempt to prevent Musharraf's plane from landing in Pakistan during the 1999 coup. This conviction has been central to the litigation [JURIST report] determining Sharif's eligibility to run for office in the future.

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