January 15, 2013 |
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan - Tahirul Qadri, the fiery Islamic cleric leading a large antigovernment protest in the heart of the capital, was in the middle of a speech denouncing President Asif Ali Zardari's administration when an aide interrupted him with news. The Supreme Court, Qadri was told, had just ordered the arrest of Zardari's prime minister on corruption charges. As he relayed the news to the crowd Tuesday, legions of Pakistanis filling a plaza about 500 yards from the parliament exploded in a yelp of joy. Many danced in the streets.
March 25, 2013 |
KARACHI, Pakistan - When he left power in 2008, he was seen as a dictator who shunned democracy in a country that wanted to embrace it. On Sunday, former Pakistani ruler Pervez Musharraf returned to his homeland after four years of self-imposed exile, hoping that a nation readying itself for historic parliamentary elections would hail his momentous return. But as he stepped off the plane at Karachi's international airport, he came back to a very different nation - one that has no interest in bringing back military rule and appears to have little if any appetite to give a onetime autocrat a major spotlight on the political stage.
December 2, 2011 |
Pakistan and the United States have been here before: a crisis followed by saber rattling, recriminations — and moves behind the scenes to patch things up. This time feels different. The rage coursing through Pakistani society over the Nov. 26 airstrike that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers suggests there may be permanent damage to a relationship already scarred this year by the killing of two Pakistani men by a CIA contractor, and by the U.S. commando raid that killed Osama bin Laden.
August 29, 2009 |
Nearly a year into his term, people close to President Asif Ali Zardari say he knows just how low his popularity has sunk. Pakistanis still call him "Mr. 10%," a reference to corruption allegations that have dogged him since stints in previous decades as a Cabinet minister. The media jabs his inability to solve myriad crises, ranging from daily power shutdowns to a moribund economy. He gets little to no credit for the military offensive to tame local Taliban forces. None of it fazes him, says Fauzia Wahab, a lawmaker with the ruling Pakistan People's Party, or PPP, and a close ally of Zardari.
March 17, 2009 |
On a day of delirious public celebrations over Pakistan's popular chief justice getting his job back, President Asif Ali Zardari stayed conspicuously out of sight. The 52-year-old president, whose popularity had been flagging even before Pakistan's latest political crisis, was like an unwelcome guest Monday at a raucous nationwide party, pilloried for his heavy-handed treatment of activists who championed the cause of Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry.
April 8, 2012 |
NEW DELHI - Pakistan's president arrived in India on Sunday, the first official visit one leader of the wary neighbors has paid to the other nation in seven years. No breakthroughs were announced, but both sides hailed the meeting as a sign of easing tensions along one of the world's most dangerous borders. Spinmeisters on both sides worked overtime to lower public expectations of the "private" trip that saw Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh discuss the 2008 terrorist attack on the Indian city of Mumbai, modest if expanding trade links, the disputed territory of Kashmir and efforts to bring various militants to justice.
May 20, 2012 |
CHICAGO - As thousands of protesters marched in the streets, President Obama welcomed more than 60 world leaders to his heavily guarded hometown for a NATO summit that will start the clock for America and its allies to begin pulling combat troops from Afghanistan. The two-day summit, the largest in the 63-year history of the military alliance, came as White House officials made it clear they were furious overPakistan's continued refusal to reopen ground routes used to move fuel and other war supplies into Afghanistan, a six-month standoff that the White House had hoped to resolve before Obama arrived in Chicago.
May 12, 2011 |
A provincial high court Thursday barred Asif Ali Zardari from maintaining dual roles as Pakistan's president and head of the ruling party, a potential setback for a leader who has reeled from one crisis to another since taking office in 2008. The Lahore High Court ruling could force Zardari to eventually choose between staying on as president and keeping his post as co-chairman of the Pakistan People's Party, or PPP. However, a lengthy appeals process could stave off implementation of the court decision and Zardari could get the ruling reversed at the Supreme Court level.
March 16, 2013 |
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan - Throughout his presidency, Pakistan's Asif Ali Zardari has looked over his shoulder. Would the military bounce him from office? Would an aggressive Supreme Court find a legal lever to send him packing? Would infighting and dissent erode his fragile coalition government? Now, as he and his government make history by becoming the first civilian administration to ever complete its five-year term - despite public approval ratings as low as 14% - Zardari's legacy is clear.
September 7, 2008 |
The ascension of Benazir Bhutto's widower to the presidency marked an emotional moment Saturday for the slain leader's supporters, but many Pakistanis wondered whether a political novice such as Asif Ali Zardari could successfully tackle the country's daunting problems. Chants of "Long live Bhutto!" rang out in parliamentary chambers as regional and national lawmakers cast ballots overwhelmingly electing Zardari to replace Pervez Musharraf, the longtime U.S. ally who stepped down last month to avoid impeachment charges.