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Last Updated: Sunday, 4 November 2007, 04:15 GMT
In quotes: Pakistan emergency reaction
Leaders in Pakistan and around the world have been reacting to the imposition of emergency rule by President Pervez Musharraf. He suspended the constitution, blaming judges for interfering and Islamist extremists for unprecedented levels of violence.

FORMER PRIME MINISTER BENAZIR BHUTTO

"Our constitution has been suspended, so in effect, martial law is being described as emergency.

"I do buy the argument that Pakistan was under growing threat due to the increase in activities by the militants, but I don't agree with the solution. I believe dictatorship has fuelled extremism. The extremists need dictatorship to flourish, and dictatorship needs the extremists as a pre-text to continue in place.

"I believe the solution lies in breaking the nexus, and that means bringing democracy."

US SECRETARY OF STATE CONDOLEEZZA RICE

"The US has made clear that it does not support extra-constitutional measures because those measures would take Pakistan away from the path of democracy and civilian rule.

"Whatever happens we will be urging for a quick return to a constitutional order, we will be urging that the commitment to hold free and fair elections be kept and we would be urging calm among the parties."

CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN LIU JIANCHAO

"We are concerned about the situation in Pakistan, and believe the Pakistani government and people are capable of solving their problems."

WHITE HOUSE SPOKESMAN GORDON JOHNDROE

"This action is very disappointing. President Musharraf needs to stand by his pledges to have free and fair elections in January and step down as chief of army staff before retaking the presidential oath of office,"

REHMAN CHISHTI, ADVISER TO EX-PRIME MINISTER BENAZIR BHUTTO

"I think these are desperate measures by a desperate man trying to cling to power. And I would certainly say this now puts an end to elections taking place in January.

"And on that basis, there is no other option than to go on the streets. And one has to look at what happened in Ukraine with the orange revolution. The people power can now prevent President Musharraf from being a supreme dictator."

FORMER PRIME MINISTER NAWAZ SHARIF

"We have never seen or heard of a crisis like this. For the first time in the 60-year history of Pakistan I am seeing today what the president of Pakistan has done and what the chief of army staff of Pakistan has done.

"He has taken certain actions using both his offices. In my opinion, both offices, the office of the president as well as the office of the chief of army staff, are involved in treason against Pakistan."

UK FOREIGN SECRETARY DAVID MILIBAND

"All friends of Pakistan will be concerned by the turn of events today. We recognise the threat to peace and security faced by the country, but its future rests on harnessing the power of democracy and the rule of law to achieve the goals of stability, development and countering terrorism.

"I am gravely concerned by the measures adopted today, which will take Pakistan further from these goals. It is vital that the government acts in accordance with the constitution, and abides by the commitment to hold free and fair elections on schedule which President Musharraf reiterated to the prime minister when they spoke on 1 November.

"We will raise our concerns about these developments at the highest levels..."

MAULANA FAZLUR REHMAN, HEAD OF MMA RELIGIOUS ALLIANCE

"The verdict about [the legality of] President Musharraf's re-election was expected, and it was probably going to go against the wishes of the government.

"The government had run out of options to prevent that from happening."

FORMER CHIEF JUSTICE SAEED-UZ-ZAHMAN SIDDIQUE

"This emergency can be challenged in court. The court can weigh or judge whether there was any justification. It can declare it null and void.

"Even if there was a dispute between the judiciary and the government, they should not have imposed an emergency."

SUPREME COURT BAR ASSOCIATION PRESIDENT AITZAZ AHSAN

"This the end for General Musharraf. If he had been a man of honour, he would have resigned when the chief justice was restored.

"The emergency will not prevent the lawyers and people of Pakistan from protesting against this unconstitutional and illegal move.

"Now is the time for us to get rid of Pervez Musharraf. Pervez Musharraf has ordered me to be put under house arrest for 30 days but he himself will be finished within 30 days. The countdown has started."

SHAHBAZ SHARIF, BROTHER OF NAWAZ SHARIF

"This is another dark chapter in Pakistan's history. Even after eight years the constitution of the country has been trampled.

"Who is responsible for this state of affairs? General Musharraf is president. He has his own cabinet - who is he blaming?"

INDIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN NAVTEJ SARNA

"We regret the difficult times that Pakistan is passing through.

"We trust that conditions of normalcy will soon return, permitting Pakistan's transition to stability and democracy to continue."

HUMAYUN HAMIDZADA, SPOKESMAN FOR AFGHAN PRESIDENT HAMID KARZAI

"We are concerned about the situation, but we don't want to prejudge the outcome.

"Relations [between the two countries] have been very good lately.

"We have been working closely on follow-up to the peace jirga [in August]. Those results could now be in jeopardy."



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