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Musharraf casts himself as viable alternative in Pakistan

Former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf has said he can provide 'a viable alternative' in the country's politics, claiming his 350,000 online 'fans' on Facebook as a testimony to his popularity.

world Updated: Nov 13, 2010 19:38 IST

Former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf has said he can provide 'a viable alternative' in the country's politics, claiming his 350,000 online 'fans' on Facebook as a testimony to his popularity.

The former military chief, who ruled the country for nine year after taking power in a coup in 1999, said he is ready to fight Pakistan's next general election in 2013 and cast himself as a tested politician who can turn around the country's dire economic problems, according to The Wall Street Journal.

"Now that Pakistan is in turmoil, the people of Pakistan remember what they had. They want a viable alternative," Musharraf was quoted as saying.

Musharraf pointed toward his 350,000 'fans' on the social networking website Facebook as a testimony to his popularity among young voters. He also claimed that his ability to raise $3 million for the victims of this year's flooding in Pakistan also proved his popularity.

Musharraf, who last month launched his own party the All Pakistan Muslim League, has been in self-imposed exile and biding for his return to Pakistan.

"I'm prepared to go back," he said. "When I've created a certain environment - and before the next election - I will go back."