Media Talk: Pakistan Votes

Talk Thursday 20th September, 2007

Elections in Pakistan are due in October and Pervez Musharraf’s position is looking fragile.

Following the Red Mosque siege and his failed attempt to sack the chief justice earlier this year, the president’s ratings are rock bottom.

Musharraf even started negotiating recently with the leader of the opposition Pakistan People’s Party, Benazir Bhutto, in an attempt to form a coalition and cling on to power.

Meanwhile members of Musharraf’s own party are resigning and Islamic militants, especially in the regions bordering Afghanistan, are gaining strength.

But President Musharraf is not ready to give away power easily. Nawaz Sharif, another exiled former prime minister, who returned to the country to challenge the president, has been arrested and deported from Pakistan within hours or arriving.

Our panel discusses the coming elections in Pakistan and looks at possible scenarios for this key western ally.

Aamir Ghauri – head of News and Current Affairs, GEO TV, UK and Europe Bureau.

Professor Anatol Lieven – chair of international relations and terrorism studies in the War Studies Department at King’s College London and a senior fellow of the New America Foundation in Washington DC. His latest research trip to Pakistan was in May of this year.

Moeed Pirzada – is a broadcaster and writer. He has produced and presented  current affairs programs like ‘World Today’, ‘Face2Face’ ‘Indepth with Dr. Pirzada’ and ‘News & Analysis’ for Pakistani channels like Ptv-Prime and ARY One World.

Dr Farzana Shaikh – Associate Fellow & Director of the Pakistan Study Group, Royal Instititute of International Affairs (Chatham House); Associate Member, Centre of South Asian Studies, University of Cambridge. She is the author of a number of books, most recently Making sense of Pakistan (forthcoming)

Moderated by David Loyn – BBC Developing World Correspondent.