11:00 am EST - 12:30 pm EST

Past Event

Pakistan’s Upcoming Election: A View From the Late Benazir Bhutto’s Pakistan People’s Party

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

11:00 am - 12:30 pm EST

The Brookings Institution
Falk Auditorium

1775 Massachusetts Ave., NW
Washington, DC

Pakistan’s democracy is at a crossroads following the assassination of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leader Benazir Bhutto on December 27. General elections, previously scheduled for January, have been postponed to February 18 and are now widely seen as a referendum of President Pervez Musharraf’s continuing rule. In the election, the PPP and former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s PML-N party will challenge Musharraf’s leadership and his own PML-Q party. Concerns remain that the elections may prove neither free nor fair, and that the electoral process may be overshadowed by political violence.

On January 22, the Brookings Institution hosted two Pakistani members of parliament to discuss the upcoming elections and the future of the PPP after Bhutto’s assassination. Dr. Javaid R. Laghari, a PPP senator from Sindh, was previously director of graduate studies and a professor of electrical and computer engineering at the State University of New York at Buffalo. Sherry Rehman is a member of parliament in the National Assembly of Pakistan and president of central policy planning for the PPP. Ms. Rehman is also a former editor of the Pakistan-based Herald news magazine. They were joined by Brookings Senior Fellow Bruce Riedel on a panel moderated by Brookings Vice President Carlos Pascual.

After the program, the panelists took audience questions.