Pakistan Muslim League (N) reverses polls boycott decision

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Islamabad, Dec 31 (UNI) The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, which had announced to boycott elections in protest against former prime minister Benazir Bhutto's assassination, has reversed its decision following announcement of the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) to participate in the same.

PML-N spokesman Siddiqul Farooq said his party chief Nawaz Sharif has decided to take part in the elections, and a formal announcement in this connection would be made in the party Central Executive Committee meeting on January 1, 2008, The Nation newspaper reported.

When contacted, PML-N Chairman Raja Zafarul Haq said the decision to take part in the elections would be made in the Central Executive Committee of the party to be held under the chairmanship of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif on January 1 in Islamabad.

Commenting on the decision of the Pakistan People's Party to take part in the upcoming elections, he said it was their decision and they better comment on it. But the decision to go to polls or otherwise would be made by the party after taking formal approval from the PML-N Central Executive Committee, he added.

Party sources disclosed that late Benazir Bhutto's husband and former senator Asif Ali Zardari had requested Mr Sharif to revoke his decision to boycott elections and also assured him that he would make the formal request to his party to end boycott in his press conference yesterday, and he did it.

Mr Sharif, after his visit to Naudero, had decided that they would go to the elections if the PPP decided not to boycott them.

Meanwhile, the PML (N) chief has said that no fair probe into the PPP chairperson Benazir Bhutto assassination was possible in presence of Pervez Musharraf.

Talking to a private TV channel, he said the nation would not believe any development regarding the probe in the presence of the sitting Judiciary.

The PML-N welcomed and respected the decisions taken by PPP Central Executive Committee and appointment of Bilawal Bhutto Zardari as party chairman, he added.

If PPP decided to go to the elections, his party would review its decision after consultation with party leaders, said Mr Sharif adding that the decision of boycotting the polls was taken as a solidarity gesture with PPP.

UNI

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