US envoys discuss Musharraf's impeachment with Zardari

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Islamabad, Aug.9 : United States Ambassador Anne W Patterson and the embassy's Deputy Chief of Mission Peter Bodey called on Pakistan People's Party (PPP) Co-Chairman Asif Zardari at Zardari House here on Friday and reportedly discussed the ruling coalition's decision to impeach President Pervez Musharraf.

According to the Pakistani dailies, the Daily Times and the Dawn, PPP sources confirmed that besides the impeachment decision, the overall political and security situation of the country was also discussed.

Zardari briefed the American diplomats about the difficulties the coalition government was facing for legislation, restoration of judiciary, war against terror and providing relief to the people.

The meeting assumes significance, as Washington is keen that the proposed impeachment process is carried out as per the Rule of Law and as per the diktats of the Pakistan Constitution.

"This is a matter for the Pakistanis to decide," the Dawn quoted State Department spokesman Gonzalo R. Gallegos as saying earlier this week.

The U.S. which has been a key ally of Musharraf, is now distancing itself from him. Gallegos said that Washington will continue its close ties with the democratically elected Government of Pakistan.

Asked how the U.S. would react if the move actually led to President Musharraf's impeachment, Gallegos, who is leaving for Islamabad this week to join the U.S. Embassy as a senior diplomat, said: "We have consistently said the internal politics of Pakistan is an issue for the Pakistani people to decide.

Our expectation is that any action will be consistent with the rule of law and the Pakistani Constitution. It is the responsibility of Pakistanis' leaders to decide on a way forward to succeed as a modern and democratic country."

ANI

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