Exiled former Premier Nawaz Sharif has rejected embattled President Pervez Musharraf's proposal for a meeting in Saudi Arabia for discussions on ending the political crisis in Pakistan.
Raja Zafrul Haq, the Chairman of Sharif's PML-N party, said the military regime had made "hectic" efforts to convene such a meeting over the past three days but the former Prime Minister refused to meet Musharraf.
"There were hectic attempts for the past three days for arranging such a meeting but Mian Nawaz Sharif was firm that he would not meet the General," Haq told PTI on Saturday.
During the last programme broadcast on the Geo News channel before it was shut down early this morning, Sharif had hinted that he had received feelers for a meeting with Musharraf in Saudi Arabia, where he is living in exile.
"But this would have been against my principles and I said no. I refused to meet him (Musharraf)," said Sharif, who was deposed by the General in a bloodless coup in 1999.
Though the Supreme Court had ruled that Sharif could return to Pakistan, he was arrested and deported to Saudi Arabia within four hours of flying into Islamabad on September 10. The Saudi government is believed to have stepped up pressure on Islamabad to allow Sharif to return to Pakistan before the general election.
Reports have suggested that the ruling PML-Q has been sending feelers for a rapprochement with Sharif's PML-N since talks stalled on a power-sharing arrangement between Musharraf and former premier Benazir Bhutto.