Page last updated at 12:31 GMT, Tuesday, 25 March 2008

Press hails new PM Gillani

The new prime minister of Pakistan, Yusuf Raza Gillani
PM Gillani takes oath of office

The new prime minister of Pakistan, Yusuf Raza Gillani, has been sworn in by President Pervez Musharraf in Islamabad.

While Pakistan's English-language press praised Mr Gillani's political experience and his immediate order to release all the judges detained when the president imposed emergency rule in November, two Urdu-language papers reminded the new prime minister of the challenges ahead.


The government of Mr Gillani will be the first of its kind in the country's history in many ways. It will be confronted with crises to which there is no immediate solution while it has to pull together with its powerful ally, the PMLN. He will ... be a discreet, slow-moving chief executive with an ear cocked to the latest inter-party consensus. And one can say that Mr Gillani is temperamentally suited to the job he will hold.


After having endured the rigours of imprisonment for more than five years on trumped-up charges, he would be the last man to think of striking any deal with the forces trying to impede the process of transition to democracy.


Mr Gillani did not lose sight of the larger goal of keeping events under control so as to minimize any chance of a confrontation being precipitated between parliament and the presidency. In this context, his appeal to the judges who were being released as he spoke, to trust parliament and seek a solution through it rather than the streets, was timely and mature.


There are challenges ahead and it will take sincerity and commitment to the values on which Pakistan was founded to consolidate democracy and work for the people's welfare. The 264-42 vote in his favour goes to show the numerical strength of the parliamentary coalition he is heading, though the sudden swelling of its ranks is not without pitfalls.


We believe Mr Gillani has become prime minister at a time when the country is faced with serious challenges... the so-called US war against terror in which Muslims have been killing their Muslim brothers, the unbearable price-hike, the law and order situation and the energy crisis in the country. We hope the new government will take sincere steps to overcome these challenges.


The views expressed by the prime minister-elect really are a true representation of the people's sentiments. We believe the resolution of constitutional issues is of immense importance but stabilizing prices and reining in... terrorism also need urgent attention. This cannot be done through mere slogans. The government and opposition will have to play a positive role towards this.

BBC Monitoring selects and translates news from radio, television, press, news agencies and the internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. It is based in Caversham, UK, and has several bureaux abroad.

New Pakistan PM Gillani sworn in
25 Mar 08 |  South Asia

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