Wednesday, December 26, 2007
That's a relief. The embattled president of Pakistan, Pervez Musharraf, and Afghanistan's U.S.-backed president, Hamid Karzai, have promised to work together to fight Taliban and al-Qaida militants believed to be operating in the border region between their countries. Musharraf blamed extremists for the recently relaxed state of emergency he declared in November; Karzai blames militants operating from bases in Pakistan for recent attacks against his government. Now, maybe we'll be able to find out just how much of their countries' territory is under government control and how much has been ceded to the extremists. In Pakistan yesterday, opposition leader Benazir Bhutto, a former prime minister, promised to crack down on extremists if she wins in parliamentary elections planned for Jan. 8, according to the Associated Press. She blamed Musharraf, who seized power in a 1999 coup, for permitting the militants to operate. Pakistan's foreign ministry said yesterday that 200 international observers are expected to arrive in the country to monitor the balloting.