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Aug 29, 2014

Pakistan PM tries to distance himself from army as crisis drags on

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Pakistan’s prime minister, weakened by weeks of opposition protests calling for him to resign, distanced himself from an army move to intervene in the crisis on Friday, saying he was not turning to the military for help to defuse the stand-off.

But in an embarrassing twist for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the army quickly denied this, saying it had been specifically instructed by the government to step in to help mediate with the opposition.

Aug 29, 2014

Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif distances himself from army as crisis drags on

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Pakistan’s prime minister, weakened by weeks of opposition protests calling for him to resign, distanced himself from an army move to intervene in the crisis on Friday, saying he did not turn to the military for help to defuse the stand-off.

Nawaz Sharif’s efforts to end the conflict have repeatedly failed in recent days, leaving Pakistan locked in a dangerous deadlock with thousands of protesters massing outside parliament for weeks in a country that has seen a string of military coups.

Aug 29, 2014

Pakistan leader distances himself from army as crisis drags on

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Pakistan’s prime minister, weakened by weeks of opposition protests calling for him to resign, distanced himself from an army move to intervene in the crisis on Friday, saying he did not turn to the military for help to defuse the stand-off.

Nawaz Sharif’s efforts to end the conflict have repeatedly failed in recent days, leaving Pakistan locked in a dangerous deadlock with thousands of protesters massing outside parliament for weeks in a country that has seen a string of military coups.

Aug 28, 2014

Pakistan’s powerful army steps in to resolve political crisis

ISLAMABAD, Aug 28 (Reuters) – Pakistan’s army stepped into a
political struggle between the country’s embattled prime
minister and the opposition on Thursday, signalling a possible
end to a crisis that has destabilised the coup-prone nation.

Pakistan has been gripped by mass rallies for more than two
weeks, with protesters led by cricketer-turned-politician Imran
Khan and firebrand cleric Tahir ul-Qadri camped outside
parliament demanding Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif resign.

Aug 28, 2014

Pakistan’s Khan looks isolated as crisis reaches crossroads

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Pakistani opposition politician Imran Khan appeared isolated in his struggle to bring down the prime minister on Thursday after a fellow protest leader announced he was ready to allow thousands of anti-government demonstrators to go home.

Pakistan has been gripped by mass rallies for two weeks, with thousands of protesters led by Khan, a cricketer-turned-politician, and cleric Tahir ul-Qadri camped outside parliament demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Aug 28, 2014

Pakistan on tenterhooks as protesters gear up for ‘decisive day’

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Pakistan slipped deeper into crisis on Thursday after talks between the government and the opposition failed and protesters prepared for what their leaders declared would be a “deciding day” in their bid to bring down the prime minister.

Pakistan has been gripped by mass protests for two weeks, with thousands of demonstrators led by cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan and firebrand cleric Tahir ul-Qadri camped outside parliament in a country prone to military coups.

Aug 26, 2014

Pakistan’s prime minister meets army chief amid crisis

ISLAMABAD/LAHORE (Reuters) – Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif met the powerful army chief on Tuesday, a source in his administration said, as a political deadlock over mass protests for the government’s resignation showed no signs of resolution.

Pakistan has been gripped by peaceful opposition protests demanding Sharif’s resignation this month, with thousands of demonstrators camped outside parliament in a country that has experienced a succession of military coups.

Jul 15, 2014

Afghanistan back from brink, but vote recount fraught with risk

KABUL (Reuters) – The euphoria over a U.S.-brokered deal between Afghanistan’s rival presidential candidates at the weekend was a sign of how close some people believe the country came to a split along ethnic lines that could quickly turn violent.

The speed at which that relief has evaporated suggests the political crisis, playing out as foreign troops prepare to withdraw after more than a decade policing the war-torn nation, is not over yet.

Jul 9, 2014

Afghan war inflicting devastating toll on civilians: U.N.

KABUL (Reuters) – Afghanistan’s war is inflicting an increasingly devastating toll on the civilian population, with the number of casualties rising by almost a quarter in the first half of this year, the United Nations said in a report on Wednesday.

U.S.-led forces are gradually withdrawing from military bases scattered across Afghanistan after 12 years of war against Taliban insurgents, contributing to deteriorating security, with civilians bearing the brunt of the violence.

Jul 8, 2014

Afghanistan’s Abdullah rejects election result as ‘coup’ against people

KABUL (Reuters) – Afghan presidential contender Abdullah Abdullah’s camp rejected preliminary results of last month’s run-off election on Monday as a “coup” against the people, putting him on a dangerous collision course with his rival, Ashraf Ghani.

The Independent Election Commission announced on Monday that Ghani won the June 14 second round with 56.44 percent of the vote, according to preliminary results. The tally might change when the final official numbers come out on July 22.