The head of Pakistan's main Islamic political alliance on Monday urged General Pervez Musharraf, the country's military ruler, to allow more democracy as an essential step towards curbing militancy.
The remarks from Qazi Hussain Ahmed, leader of the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA), came amid a country-wide search for suspects following Sunday night's bomb attack aimed at Gen Musharraf in the city of Rawalpindi. Mr Ahmed warned the government against a fresh campaign aimed at Islamic groups, responding to speculation that Islamic activists were high on the list of potential suspects.
"When you adopt non-democratic methods, you encourage militancy because people don't have the space to express themselves freely," he said, calling on Gen Musharraf to step down as chief of the military - a position he holds alongside the presidency - and give more authority to elected members of parliament.
Best New Blog finalist - 2003 Koufax Awards
A non-violent, counter-dominant, left-liberal, possibly charismatic, quasi anarcho-libertarian Quaker's take on politics, volleyball, and other esoterica.
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