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Monday, October 25, 1999 Published at 15:20 GMT 16:20 UK

World: South Asia

Who is in charge of Pakistan?

Punjab's new governor Mohammed Safdar is sworn in

By Owen Bennett-Jones in Islamabad

It has been two weeks now since the coup which propelled General Musharraf to power, but beyond his televised address to the nation virtually no official announcements have been made concerning the country's new administrative set up.

Pakistan in crisis

The army says it wants to establish a national security council, but it is still not clear who will sit on it.

Officials say they are trying to select people to serve not only for the security council, but also for the federal cabinet.

Some senior bureaucratic positions are also still to be filled and the military say they want to make one announcement about these matters as a package.

New governors

The military have said who will be performing as the new governors of Pakistan's four provinces, but even then there was a delay as the new men could not swear an oath to the old constitution which is in abeyance.

[ image: Confusion over General Musharraf's deputy]
Confusion over General Musharraf's deputy
A new oath has now been formulated and three of the governors have been sworn in; the fourth will take the oath when he returns from a trip abroad.

The sense that the military are yet to resolve some basic issues about their administration is added to by the fact that it is not entirely clear who is running the country whilst the new chief executive, General Musharraf, is abroad.

Official spokesmen say that in terms of rank, the next most senior military officer is the head of the air force, Air Marshal P M Qureshi.

In practical terms though, it seems that an army officer, General Mohammed Aziz Khan, who is chief of the general staff, is handling day to day affairs whilst General Musharraf is away.

There has been no official announcement about who is General Musharraf's deputy and even official spokesmen are unclear as to who is formally running the country whilst the general is abroad.

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