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Pakistan makes its own decisions

August 17, 2007

Re "A well-timed nudge," editorial, Aug. 10

The current Pakistani government is committed to hold fair, free and transparent elections by the end of this year, in full view of the international observers and media representatives. Your assertion of foreign pressure in this regard is uncalled for. It was Pakistan's own decision not to impose an emergency in the country because circumstances did not warrant it. It has nothing to do with the telephone call by the U.S. secretary of State, as asserted in the editorial.

It is unfair to cast aspersions on Pakistan's democratic credentials after the restoration of the chief justice, the freedom that media enjoy today in Pakistan,the empowerment of women and non-Muslims,and the lowering of the adult franchise to mainstream youth in the political process. Pakistan's parliament is fully functional with robust opposition.

M. Akram Shaheedi

Washington

The writer is the press minister of the Pakistan Embassy.

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