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'We will be unable to impeach Musharraf'

world Updated: Feb 25, 2008 23:07 IST

PTI
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Pakistan Peoples Party leader Asif Ali Zardari has said his coalition will be unable to impeach embattled President Pervez Musharraf and instead he would seek a working relationship with him.

"The ground reality is that we do not have two-thirds majority in both the houses of Parliament" that would be required for a successful impeachment of the President, Zardari told the Wall Street Journal.

"Our main objective is to work for the smooth transition to democracy," Zardari said. "We want to unify the country, which is facing some very serious challenges. We have to establish democracy and for that we need unity and not confrontation."
PPP has emerged as the single largest party in last week's parliamentary elections and is planning to form a coalition government with former premier Nawaz Sharif's PML-N.

The Senate, Parliament's upper house, remains in the control of Musharraf's supporters. Zardari's comments, the Journal noted, are among the most conciliatory to date from a senior official of the coalition regarding its intended approach to Musharraf.

The PPP leader also said his government would increase cooperation with the US, adding that Pakistan faces its own threat from the extremists.

"We are fighting our own war on terror, rather than the American war on terror," he said.

His government, Zardari said in the interview, wouldn't talk to the militants, but that it would reach out to the people living in the tribal areas.

"We will take democracy there and political reforms to win the support of the tribesmen," Zardari, the husband of slain former premier Benazir Bhutto, said.

He also indicated that he might run for a parliamentary seat in a by-election in Bhutto's constituency in the southern province of Sindh. "I will contest the elections if the party decides," he said.

Zardari said he didn't have any intention of becoming prime minister, but would concentrate on party organisation and assist the government.

Though co-chairman of the party, he didn't seek a seat in Parliament in the election. "It is more important to guide the government and the party," he said.