Published: Thu, July 26, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Pakistan election: Khan claims victory amid rigging claims

Pakistan election: Khan claims victory amid rigging claims

Addressing a news conference in northeastern Lahore city, Shehbaz Sharif, president of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) of the three-time premier Nawaz Sharif, said his party "totally" rejected the results, which suggested that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party of former cricket star Imran Khan is going to form the next government.

Shehbaz went on to say that rigging has inflicted massive blow to Pakistan's democratic system and stated that Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has utterly failed in carrying out transparent elections.

"These elections were 100 percent transparent and fair", Raza said.

Although the reports have been sketchy, the PTI is likely to do well in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

"I congratulate Imran Khan".

The results are yet to be out officially but Khan's supporters are already in a celebratory mood.

Khan, who captained Pakistan to their World Cup cricket victory in 1992, vowed to tackle widespread corruption while building an "Islamic welfare state".

In contrast to the PML-N, Khan is also against China's huge investment in Pakistan, which has racked up billions of dollars in debt to Beijing.

Khan is also likely to be met with trepidation in neighbouring Afghanistan, where he has been vocal in his opposition to the USA -led invasion that followed the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States. The army has also dismissed allegations of meddling in the election.

Monitors had been thrown out of polling stations as votes were tallied and results were unexpectedly delayed for hours.

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Another witness said seven or eight police vehicles were at the scene and the road next to the large complex has been closed off. Some witnesses claimed that they heard a blast, however, the nature of the explosion is yet to be determined.

Explaining the process, the election commissioner clarified that only one polling agent of every party is allowed inside the polling station at the time of counting of votes.

In a television address, he said: "We were successful and we were given a mandate".

The leaders of other political parties, the PPP, and the Muttahidda Qaumi Movement, also expressed concerns about irregularities during voting.

The attack outside the polling station in Quetta, the capital of Baluchistan province, underscored the difficulties the majority Muslim nation faces on its wobbly journey toward sustained democracy. IS claimed responsibility for that attack.

The military has stationed over 370,000 personnel across Pakistan to ensure security for the election, bolstered by an additional 450,000 police.

The election will be only the second civilian transfer of power in Pakistan's 71-year history.

Voting appeared to be heavy in major urban centers, where long lines of voters were seen. Pakistan's National Assembly comprises a total of 342 members, of which 272 are directly elected whereas the rest-60 seats reserved for women and 10 for religious minorities-are selected later through proportional representation among parties with more than 5 per cent of the vote.

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) issued notices to various political leaders for violating the code of conduct during the general election 2018.

Polling officers count ballots at a polling station in Islamabad.

The Americans will be particularly concerned about the outcome of the election, given that Khan famously said he would order the Pakistani military to shoot down American drones if he came to power, and advocated negotiations with Pakistani Taliban fighters rather than military operations against them. The PTI and ruling PML-N are thought to be neck and neck in the elections. In 2004, the couple announced they had divorced amicably, ending the nine-year marriage because it was "difficult for Jemima to adapt to the political life of Imran Khan in Pakistan". He has appealed his sentence.

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