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Last Updated: Monday, 5 November 2007, 04:43 GMT
UK considers Pakistan aid package
Pakistani policeman with helmet and weapon (4 November 2007)
The emergency decree has put security forces on the streets
The government is coming under pressure to curtail aid to Pakistan after President Pervez Musharraf declared a state of emergency on Saturday.

More than 230m is currently pledged to the country, a figure that is set to rise to 480m from 2008 to 2011.

The Foreign Office said it was "considering its position" as the US reviewed its own aid to Pakistan.

Under the emergency decree, rights have been suspended, the media restricted and opposition leaders arrested.

Threat to democracy

General Musharraf imposed the state of emergency amid rising Islamic militant violence and ahead of a Supreme Court decision on whether his re-election last month while remaining army chief was valid.

Mr Musharraf said he was imposing the state of emergency in order to curb extremism.

Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz said the emergency would last for "as long as is necessary", and Islamabad has suggested parliamentary polls scheduled for January could be delayed by up to a year.

Constitutional safeguards on life and liberty curtailed
Police get wide powers of arrest
Suspects can be denied access to lawyers
Freedom of movement restricted
Private TV stations taken off air
New rules curtail media coverage of suicide bombings or militant activity
Chief justice replaced, others made to swear oath of loyalty
Supreme Court banned from rescinding emergency order

The reassessment of the UK's aid package comes as MPs called for greater pressure to be put on the Pakistani leader.

Liberal Democrat leadership contender Chris Huhne said Britain could be left isolated if it failed to deal firmly with General Musharraf.

He told ITV's Sunday Edition: "It is a big mistake for the Government not to put more pressure on General Musharraf because frankly Pakistan is going to have a new democratic regime, there is going to be a change back and we are aligning ourselves with the wrong side."

Foreign Secretary David Miliband said he was "gravely concerned" at the crisis, and the UK would raise its concerns "at the highest level".

He also called for British nationals of Pakistani ancestry to use any contacts they might have to "make the case for democracy and the rule of law".

If the US were to curtail its aid to Pakistan, the country would be heavily hit.

The nation has received at least US$10bn from the US since it became a close ally in President George W Bush's "war on terror" in 2001.


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