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Sunday, April 21, 2024  
09 Shawwal 1445  

US legislators call on Biden not to recognise new govt in Pakistan

At least 31 congress members sign letter asking for investigation into elections

At least 31 members of the United States Congress have called on the Joe Biden administration from witholding recognition of Pakistan’s new government until elections are investigated.

The letter has been addressed to President Biden and Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and calls for a ‘thorough, transparent, and credible investigation of election interference’ before the new government is recognised.

“We write to express our concerns about pre- and post-poll rigging in Pakistan’s recent parliamentary elections,” the letter says.

The lawmakers have also asked the US government to urge Pakistani authorities to release political prisoners and gather information about their cases.

The thrid and final demand says that the US should ‘make clear to Pakistani authorities that U.S. law provides for accountability for acts that violate human rights, undermine democracy, or further corruption, including the potential for military and other cooperation to be halted’.

The letter also notes that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf founder Imran Khan was sentenced to prison in two separate cases just days before the country went to the polls.

“Concerns arose after delays in reporting final results and early returns showed PTI-backed candidates on a path to victory. Over the coming days and weeks, previously reported vote totals allegedly changed dramatically,” the letter reads.

The letter added that the claims of election rigging have been lent credibility by findings by credible organisations including FAFEN. It also expounded on the discrepancies between Forms-45 and 47.

“Given the strong evidence of pre- and post-poll rigging, we urge you to wait until a thorough, transparent, and credible investigation has been conducted before recognizing a new Pakistani government,” the letter said, adding that recognising the government without such an inquiry would enable anti-democratic behaviour.

“It is in the U.S. interest to ensure that democracy thrives in Pakistan and that election results reflect the interests of the Pakistani people, not the interests of the Pakistani elite and military,” it said.

The letter is led by Representatives Greg Casar and Susan Wild, and signed by representatives Donald Beyer, Jamaal Bowman, Cori Bush, André Carson, Judy Chu , Yvette Clarke, Madeleine Dean, Lloyd Doggett, Veronica Escobar, Jesús “Chuy” García, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Steven Horsford, Pramila Jayapal, Hank Johnson, Ro Khanna, Raja Krishnamoorthi, Greg Landsman, Barbara Lee, Summer Lee, Jim McGovern, Ilhan Omar, Frank Pallone, Jamie Raskin, Jan Schakowsky, Rashida Tlaib, David Trone, Marc Veasey, Nydia Velázquez, and Bonnie Watson Coleman.

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