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Ruling coalition meets to discuss new president

Article published on the 2008-08-19 Latest update 2008-08-19 16:04 TU

Bystanders watch Musharraf's resignation on TV(Credit: Reuters)

Bystanders watch Musharraf's resignation on TV
(Credit: Reuters)

Leaders of Pakistan's ruling coalition met on Tuesday to discuss a possible replacement for former president Pervez Musharraf, who stepped down on Monday to avoid impeachment charges. The group also discussed the reinstatement of dozens of judges whom Musharraf removed from the bench last year.

Pakistan's law stipulates that a new president must be selected within 30 days of the post being vacated.

State Senate Chairman Mohammedmian Soomro became acting president on Monday, until elections for a new president.

A number of names have come up as possible replacements for the man who seized power nine years ago in a bloodless coup.

Officials indicate that candidates include two politicians from the smaller provinces of Baluchistan and Sindh. Another option would be to elect a female candidate. Possibilities include Fehmida Mirza, the speaker of the National Assembly, which is the lower house of parliament, or slain former premier Benazir Bhutto's sister-in-law Faryal Talpur.

The four-party coalition was also to broach reinstatement of the judges, who were fired by Musharraf in November after he called a state of emergency. They failed to come to agreement and according to the leader of the MMA, one of the two smaller coalition parties, a decision on the judges should come by the end of the week.