[QODLink]
Witness
Power Play in Pakistan
Witness follows the twists and turns of recent events in the country.
Last Modified: 15 Jun 2009 13:58 GMT

Watch part two                    Watch part three                    Watch part four

By Rageh Omaar/Farah Durrani

Rageh Omaar and Farah Durrani follow the twists and turns of recent events in Pakistan, with extraordinary access to Pervez Musharraf, the Pakistani president, as he hands over command of the army to his trusted friend and confidant General Ashfaq Kayani.

Musharraf confides in Rageh that the decision to leave the army was a deeply emotional one. He recalls the handing-over ceremony on November 29 as bittersweet.

"This army is my life. This army is my passion," he says. "I have loved this army. From tomorrow morning, this relationship will change, and I will be no more in uniform."

Musharraf has ruled the country since 1999, when he seized power in a bloodless military coup. Since then he has faced a rising number of chronic national difficulties from poverty and sectarianism, lack of accountability and trust in governance, to regional disputes in Baluchistan and Waziristan on the Afghan border - all from his joint position as military leader and president.

In a country with numerous influential religious-political parties that hold deep anti-American sentiments, his decision to become a key US ally in the attempt to oust the Taliban has proved to be intensely controversial.

Against the backdrop of an increasingly isolated military government, Rageh and Farah follow the increasing numbers of lawyers and judiciary who lead a grassroots opposition against what they describe as a military dictatorship.

With the promise of democratic elections eagerly anticipated in January, Rageh assesses the landscape for transition and change in government speaking to key political figures in the opposition movement including a focused Benazir Bhutto and a weary Imran Khan, now released from a spell in prison during the recent period of emergency rule imposed by Musharraf.

 

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
People
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
More than one-quarter of Gaza's population has been displaced, causing a humanitarian crisis.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Muslim charities claim discrimination after major UK banks began closing their accounts.
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Featured
Assam officials upset that WWII-era Stillwell Road won't be used in transnational highway linking four Asian nations.
Informal health centres are treating thousands of Syrian refugees in Turkey, easing the pressure on local hospitals.
Indonesian and Malaysian authorities are keeping a close eye on local supporters of the hard-line Middle East group.
Wastewater ponds dot the landscape in US states that produce gas; environmentalists say they’re a growing threat.
China President Xi Jinping's Mongolia visit brings accords in the areas of culture, energy, mining and infrastructure.
join our mailing list