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'An impeachment motion against Musharraf any time'

The PML-N, a key ally in the PPP-led coalition government, says it is prepared to move an impeachment motion against President Pervez Musharraf at "any time."

world Updated: Jun 21, 2008 20:20 IST

The PML-N, a key ally in the PPP-led coalition government, on Saturday said it was prepared to move an impeachment motion against President Pervez Musharraf at "any time", a day after the two parties acknowledged differences over "modalities" for his ouster.

Senior PML-N leader Ahsan Iqbal, a close aide of party chief Nawaz Sharif, told reporters in Islamabad that an impeachment motion against the beleaguered president "could be moved in Parliament at any time".

Following a meeting between Sharif and PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari in Lahore on Friday, PML-N leader Khwaja Asif had said: "There are no differences between the PML-N and the PPP that Pervez Musharraf should go. However, there are differences on modalities."

However, senior PPP leaders have insisted that the coalition does not have the two-thirds majority in both houses of Parliament needed to pass an impeachment motion.

Iqbal said the PML-N has no objection to most clauses in the constitutional amendment package prepared by Pakistan People's Party to clip Musharraf's wings but had "reservations on those related to the restoration of the deposed judges".

He also said it was time for the PPP to honour commitment made by its late chairperson Benazir Bhutto to restore all the judges who were deposed during last year's emergency by Musharraf.

The reinstatement of the deposed judges is the very basis of the coalition, which would be further strengthened if they are restored, he said.

However, Iqbal cautioned that the coalition would be weakened if the restoration of the judges is delayed further.

The PML-N had pulled its ministers out of the cabinet in May after the federal government missed two deadlines for reinstating the judges, including deposed Supreme Court Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry.