Internet Anthropologist Think Tank: Pakistani Election: MEANING

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    Tuesday, February 19, 2008

    Pakistani Election: MEANING

    the election was a repudiation of Pakistan's flirtation with radical Islam. At press time, with more than half of the results announced, Islamic parties had taken only three of 272 seats in the National Assembly, compared with 45 in 2002. In their place, voters chose secular parties, such as Benazir Bhutto's Pakistan People's Party (PPP).

    "This is profoundly a vote for liberal democracy," says Shafqat Mahmood, a former senator, now a columnist for The News, a national newspaper.

    Pakistan's two largest parties, the PPP and former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's faction of the Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N) will form a unity government. Projections of the still-unfinished count suggest these two parties could control two-thirds of the seats in parliament if they join with several other small allies.

    The extremists lost seats. Taliban was the biggest looser in the elections.

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