Musharraf rules out imposition of emergency
Putting up a brave front in the face of massive violence in Pakistan's biggest city Karachi, President Pervez Musharraf on Saturday ruled out imposition of emergency and promised to hold free and fair polls later this year.
"Let me assure you there is no question of that (declaring President's rule), nothing of that sort is happening," he said addressing a mammoth rally in Islamabad to drum up support in the midst of the political crisis sparked by suspension of Chief Justice Iftikhar M Chaudhry.
The ruling PML-Q mobilised a massive crowd of over a lakh of people for the rally to counter the public receptions being accorded to Chaudhry, who was being supported by the opposition parties.
While PML-Q held the rally in the national capital, its ally MQM organised its meeting in Karachi despite violence.
The idea of holding the rallies apparently was to prevent the repetition of last week's roadshow by Chaudhry from Islamabad to Lahore, where he received massive pubic receptions.
In his address, Musharraf, describing the problems arising of Chaudhry's suspension as "irritants," said his priority was to sustain the "economic boom" the country was experiencing at the moment.
"It is a temporary irritant. There is absolutely no requirement and environment for taking such drastic measures (like imposing emergency). So these under-currents must stop. There is no such need at all," he said.
Doubts have been cast over the necessity for the government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to impose a draconian emergency in the country in February to counter the so-called Freedom Convoy then occupying the capital of Ottawa, as documents filed in a court on Thursday appeared to indicate there was information that a “breakthrough” was possible in negotiations between authorities and the anti-vaccine mandate protesters. The Canadian government has countered these revelations.
Over the last two years, the United States has seen coronavirus wreaking havoc while the world witnessed the worst of the pandemic in one of the world's most developed nations. Amid the virus and its mutation still being a matter of concern, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has taken a step forward in loosening the restrictions. Children exposed to Covid don't have to get a negative test.
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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky urged the international community to force the Russian army to leave the occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant after multiple strikes hit the compound. This statement came after Ukraine accused Russia of shelling the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant again on Thursday, Al Jazeera reported. Ukraine's interior minister said that Kyiv is making contingency plans to face any scenario at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, including evacuating people from the area.
A gunman demanding a Beirut bank let Bassam al-Sheikh Hussein, a 42-year-old food-delivery driver withdraw his trapped savings to pay his father's medical bills took up to 10 people hostage in a seven-hour standoff Thursday before surrendering in exchange for what a family lawyer said was $35,000 of his money. A 42-year-old food-delivery driver, Bassam al-Sheikh Hussein, was promptly arrested and taken away by police as he walked out of the bank. Some bystanders hailed him as a hero.