Speed Reads

hanging on

Pakistan's PM fights to stay in power as Supreme Court hears opposition challenge

Pakistan's Supreme Court heard a challenge from opposition politicians on Monday after Prime Minister Imran Khan dissolved parliament and called for new elections on Sunday in a bid to remain in power, BBC reported Monday.

Khan, a former cricket star who took office in 2018, faced a no-confidence vote on Sunday that he appeared likely to lose after several lawmakers from his own party turned against him. Instead, the deputy speaker of Pakistan's parliament blocked the vote, claiming it was unconstitutional, which gave Khan time to call for early elections in an attempt to shore up support.

Per BBC, the Supreme Court was originally expected to hand down its decision "by the end of Monday, but delayed the decision until Tuesday." The New York Times, however reported Monday that the "timeline for the court's ruling was not immediately clear" and that "analysts worried that a lengthy process could fuel uncertainty about the country's political future."

On Saturday, Khan said he would not accept the results of the no-confidence vote if he lost and blamed the campaign to remove him from office on a "regime change" scheme orchestrated by the United States. According to the Times, the U.S. has denied any involvement.

Since the country gained independence in 1947, no Pakistani prime minister has completed a full five-year term.