HOME ABOUT REPORTS CONTACT HELP WANTED
Today there is a great deal of turmoil in Pakistan. Pakistan is a very important country and a nuclear power, so it is important that things work out in a positive manner. We feel that the only solution is free elections as soon as possible. We feel that all parties need to work together in a reasonable manner to help Pakistan. The best way to do that are open and fair free elections as soon as possible.
In terms of the situation with Imran Khan, we urge all parties to be reasonable and urge the litigation issues to be resolved before the election.
IMRAN KHAN'S TIME IN JAIL
On May 9th, 2023, Imran Khan was arrested and accused of corruption. Pakistan's Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah said Khan was arrested in relation to a case filed in Pakistan's anti-corruption court, which Khan had not attended.
On May 12th, 2023, former Prime Minister Imran Khan was granted bail by Islamabad's highest court and released.
“I am 100% sure I will be arrested again. I was allowed by the NAB to talk to my wife, arrest warrants are issued against her too,” Khan told CNN outside the courtroom ahead of his hearing.
On August 5th, 2023, a court handed him a three-year sentence for corruption.
The prison sentence could bar him from politics under a law that prohibits anyone with a criminal conviction from holding or running for public office. He could also lose the chairmanship of the party he founded, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, or PTI.
Khan was arrested August 5th at his home in the eastern city of Lahore and taken to prison.
APRIL 2023, PAKISTAN'S SUPREME COURT RULES THAT ELECTIONS MUST NOT BE DELAYED:
Pakistan's supreme court recently ordered elections in the country's most populous region, the province of Punjab. These elections were supposed to happen on May 14th. They have declared the decision to delay the assembly elections as unconstitutional.
The court’s verdict followed a petition filed by the main opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party, led by former Prime Minister Imran Khan.
Khan’s party had challenged the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) decision to delay the Punjab polls from April 30 to October 8 after the government refused to give funds to conduct the exercise citing the economic crisis.
We believe the decision of Pakistan's Supreme Court must be respected.
APRIL 2022, IMRAN KHAN'S DEEPLY UNPOPULAR REMOVAL FROM POWER:
Former cricket star and former prime minister Imran Khan, is extremely popular with the Pakistani people. He has broken records for the size of the public crowds he is able to draw. Yet despite his popularity, he was ousted from his role as prime minister back in April 2022. A no-confidence motion was filed against Imran Khan by his political opponents.
This move has resulted in increasing political turmoil in the impoverished country, which is already struggling with a spiraling economy, food shortages and the aftermath of floods that put a third of the country underwater. Pakistan's summer floods also triggered a surge in malaria and damaged millions of acres of farmland. We will also emphasize that Pakistan is a nuclear armed power right on the border of Afghanistan, a nation ruled by the Taliban. Peace and stability is needed in Pakistan now more than ever.
After he was ousted, Imran Khan was replaced as prime minister by Shehbaz Sharif. There's been a series of local elections in the country since. In Punjab, the second largest province of Pakistan, Imran Khan's party won a stunning victory of 15 of 20 available seats. After this, Khan made a public demand for 'fair and free' general elections in Pakistan.
"There is only one way [to rid the country from political instability free and fair election. When they were removing me, I had announced general elections but courts overturned my decision. I still believe it was the right call," Khan said while addressing the nation following his party's landslide victory in the by-elections in Punjab. (Telegraph India, 7-18-22)
However, Pakistan's elections commission on October 21st, 2022, disqualified former Prime Minister Imran Khan from holding public office for five years, after finding he had unlawfully sold state gifts and concealed assets as premier, officials said. In response, dozens of angry Khan supporters gathered outside the commission headquarters in the capital, Islamabad. They chanted slogans against its decision. Security forces and paramilitary troops cordoned off the compound, blocking the crowd from getting inside. (NPR, 10-21-22)
The move to remove Khan from power is likely to deepen lingering political turmoil in Pakistan.
The democratic will of the people in Pakistan needs to be respected. Fair and free elections need to be held as soon as possible.
66 US LAWMAKERS URGE ANTONY BLINKEN TO PUSH FOR DEMOCRACY IN PAKISTAN
As many as 66 US lawmakers have urged Secretary of State Antony Blinken to push for democracy and human rights in Pakistan.
The lawmakers wrote the following in a letter to Antony Blinken: “We write to express our concerns about the current situation in Pakistan and urge you to use all diplomatic tools at your disposal to pressure the government of Pakistan towards a greater commitment to democracy, human rights, and the rule of law.”
The 66 lawmakers also urged Blinken to persuade Islamabad to “investigate any infringement upon freedom of speech and freedom of assembly in Pakistan.”
The Pakistan American Political Action Committee (PAKPAC), which initiated the move, has commended the 66 lawmakers for writing the letter to Secretary Blinken.
The letter, coauthored by Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin, a Democrat, and Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick, was released days after former prime minister Imran Khan was arrested.
66 US lawmakers urge Blinken to push for ‘democracy’ in Pakistan (Dawn, 5-19-23)
Read Letter Here
Pakistan American PAC
OUR RELATED ARTICLES
Afghanistan Facing Historic Humanitarian Disaster
Time to Stop Mass Murder in Afghanistan
How to Help Pakistan's Flood Victims
Pakistan’s Supreme Court orders Punjab election on May 14 (Aljazeera, 4-4-23)
Next Pakistani general election (Wikipedia)
Official Election Commission of Pakistan
Pakistan’s ex-PM Imran Khan goes from high office to high-security prison after sentencing (AP, 8-6-23)
Pakistan: Authorities must show restraint and lift internet restrictions immediately (Amnesty, 5-11-23)
Pakistan's Supreme Court orders release of former Prime Minister Imran Khan (NPR, 5-11-23)
Pakistan top court orders release of former PM Imran Khan (Aljazeera, 5-11-23)
Imran Khan demands 'fair and free' general elections in Pakistan after stunning Punjab poll win (Telegraph India, 7-18-22)
Pakistan sets a 5-year ban on former Prime Minister Imran Khan holding office (NPR, 10-21-22)
Ousted Pakistan PM Khan Sweeps Key By-Election (VOA, 10-17-22)
Ex-Pakistan PM Imran Khan barred from elections for five years (The Guardian, 10-21-22)
Imran Khan Sweeps By-Elections in Pakistan (The Diplomat, 10-18-22)
Imran Khan Wins Majority of Seats in Pakistan’s By-Elections (Bloomberg, 10-16-22)
Large Crowd Gathers for Imran Khan (Twitter, 5-6-22)
U.S. Meddling in Pakistani Politics?
U.S. Meddling in Pakistani Politics (Modern Diplomacy, 5-1-22)
In Pakistan’s rush for regime change, they elected Shehbaz Sharif the new prime minister who is still on bail for money laundering (Labour Heartlands, 4-12-22)
Pakistan’s prime minister blamed ouster on U.S. meddling. Here’s why (Washington Post, 4-11-22)
What is going on in Pakistan? And why has the US been dragged into it? (The Conversation, 4-6-22)
Is the US interfering in Pakistan's internal matter to overthrow Imran Khan (Business-Standard, 4-5-22)
Pakistan in Chaos as Prime Minister Dissolves Parliament (The National Interest, 4-4-22)