Islamabad, Feb.12 : The Pakistan Government on Tuesday mobilised and deployed tens of thousands of troops across the country well ahead of the February 18 general elections.
Interior Ministry spokesman Javed Cheema confirmed that soldiers and paramilitaries are guarding key government installations and potentially sensitive areas of several major cities.
"The Army has started mobilising and moving to their respective areas of deployment today and would complete its deployment by February 15," Cheema told reporters here.
The authorities plan to provide security to over 64,000 polling stations, Cheema said.
More than 1,000 international observers and journalists were coming to monitor the polls, he added.
Cheema rejected opposition concerns that the army could be used to interfere with the polls to benefit allies of President Pervez Musharraf.
"Nobody would be allowed to disrupt the polling process or create any law and order situation," he said.
"We have also provided security to some political personalities, including Asif Ali Zardari who have threats to their lives," Sindh's Home Minister Akhtar Zamin said in Karachi, the provincial capital.