Friday, August 10, 2007
Views from Pakistan’s press
Here are some excerpts from today’s Pakistani newspapers that were compiled by the BBC South Asia website.
Papers in Pakistan express relief at official denials that the government is planning to impose a state of emergency.
Most are suspicious of the motives that could have prompted President Pervez Musharraf to consider such a move, with one paper saying it would have been "a recipe for disaster".
Better sense prevailed... [A state of emergency] would not only have met with resistance but also proved to be a recipe for disaster.
Even a lay observer can tell that the real motive behind imposing the emergency would be to give the president some breathing space and to fend off any legal challenge to his plans for re-electing himself... The decision to impose an emergency in the country cannot be justified on any ground - moral, legal or constitutional - and would only serve to destabilise the country.
The timing of the move is wrong... It suggests that Gen Musharraf is putting his own mundane personal interest above the national interest... The way out is not an emergency but free and fair general elections that return the mandate to the people to whom it belongs.
The threats facing the nation are grave, and only a government armed with a mandate from the people - a mandate secured through a fair and free election - can stem the tide of extremism and meet the threats to Pakistan's sovereignty.
It is a good thing that the country remains safe from the curse of emergency rule. One positive aspect of this is that the country will also be spared a new confrontation between the government and the judiciary and its possible repercussions. This will also pave the way for the restoration of democracy.
If the president imposes a state of emergency in the country, the political confrontation will intensify... President Musharraf needs to avoid taking such a decision, or his image both inside the country and abroad will be damaged.
If there is any need to impose emergency rule for some particular purpose, it should be confined to those reasons so that the process of stabilising democratic institutions... is not impeded.
The imposition of a state of emergency would prove to be a final blunder on the part of the government... It is better for the government to take the nation into its confidence through parliament before going ahead with any such step. If it exacerbates the situation even further, the government itself will be the main loser.
Declaration of Emergency