Pakistan Winning Some and Losing Some

An election that might bring an end to martial law

Pakistan's national elections last week were in effect a tug-of-war between President Mohammed Zia ul-Haq, who seized power in 1977, and the alliance of eleven opposition parties known as the Movement for the Restoration of Democracy. Zia exhorted his countrymen to vote, thereby demonstrating their support of his government; the opposition parties called for an election boycott, in the hope that this would lead Zia and the other generals back to their barracks. The result was a standoff. Rejecting the opposition's call for a boycott, almost 53% of the country's 35 million eligible voters went to the polls, compared with 59%...

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