Friday, January 25, 2008

Imran meets Senate majority leader about judiciary

Mr Imran Khan Chairman PTI and his delegation including Secretary General Dr Arif Alvi, Mr Ali Zaidi, and Dr Ikramullah Khan a Pakistani surgeon from Las Vegas met a high powered Senate group under the leadership of Senator Harry Reid the Senate Majority Leader, Senator Dick Durbin who is Assistant Senate Majority Leader, Chairman Senate Foreign Relation Committee Senator Joe Biden, Chairman South Asia Committee Senator John Kerry, Senator Patty Murray Member Senate Appropriations Committee and Secretary of Senate Democratic Party Caucus, Senator Casey who is Member Senate Foreign Relations Committee and Senator Tom Harkin Member Senate Appropriations Committee. The meeting lasted one and a half hour.

Mr Imran Khan expressed his views that the current US policy of supporting a military dictator is contrary to American values. He insisted that the relationship should be between the people rather than between President Bush and Musharraf. Mr Khan said that PTI is struggling for the restoration of the judiciary and that Musharraf should resign as he is an illegal President. PTI wants a free and fair election to be held under a national caretaker government. Without restoration of the judiciary elections would be a farce. Mr Khan said that he is meeting lawmakers in the US Capital to make them aware of the real situation in Pakistan. He said that the current policy of the Bush administration is actually promoting terrrorism. Musharraf's indiscriminate bombardment of civilians in Waziristan, FATA and Swat is providing a fertile ground for terrorist recruitment.

After the meeting of the PTI with the entire Senate leadership Senator harry Reids office issued the following Press Release.


Washington, DC—Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid met today with Imran Khan, a leading Pakistani opposition leader, to discuss the upcoming Pakistani elections and the future of democracy in Pakistan.Khan, a member of the Pakistani parliament, leads the Justice Movement party and expressed deep concern about the Pakistani judiciary.

Khan made it clear that Pakistan cannot have true democracy, or free and fair elections, without reinstating the head of the Supreme Court and the rest of the judges President Musharraf dismissed. He also believes that the February 18th parliamentary elections may be rigged, which would further undermine Pakistani democracy. “Today’s meeting made it even clearer that the United States must support the people of Pakistan rather than individuals in that nation’s government who oppose democracy,” Reid said. “I believe that the United States needs to look closely at the assistance we send to Pakistan. If President Musharraf does not allow full and free elections and does not restore freedoms, we need to consider reducing non-development aid to Pakistan.”

Reid recently sent President Bush a letter urging him to consider cutting off non-development aid to Pakistan unless President Musharraf reinstates the previous Supreme Court, restores all freedoms and allows a full investigation into the recent assassination of former Prime Minister Bhutto.

In today’s meeting, the group also discussed U.S. development assistance to Pakistan and the importance of ensuring that U.S. taxpayer dollars are helping the Pakistani people in areas like education and healthcare.

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