UK acknowledges concerns over ‘fairness’ of Pakistan’s elections

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LONDON: The United Kingdom (UK) on Friday acknowledged serious concerns about the “fairness and lack of inclusivity” of Pakistan s general elections 2024, ARY News reported.

“We regret that not all parties were formally permitted to contest the elections and that legal processes were used to prevent some political leaders from participation, and to prevent the use of recognisable party symbols,” British Foreign Secretary David Cameron said in a statement.

The foreign secretary further said, “We also note the restrictions imposed on internet access on polling day, significant delays to the reporting of results and claims of irregularities in the counting process”.

“The UK urges authorities in Pakistan to uphold fundamental human rights, including free access to information, and the rule of law. This includes the right to a fair trial, through adherence to due process and an independent and transparent judicial system, free from interference,” the British diplomat added.

He added that the election of a civilian government with the mandate to deliver crucial reforms is essential for Pakistan to flourish.

“The new government must be accountable to the people it serves, and work to represent the interests of all Pakistan s citizens and communities with equity and justice,” he added. “We look forward to working with Pakistan s next government to achieve this, and across the range of our shared interests.”

Read More: US looks forward to complete results reflecting “will of Pakistanis”

The vote count is underway after millions of Pakistanis exercised their right to vote to elect their representatives for five-year term amid the countrywide internet and mobile shutdown, political violence, and terror attacks.

As many as 17,816 independent and party-affiliated candidates contested for 265 National Assembly, 296 Punjab Assembly, 130 Sindh Assembly, 113 Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), and 51 Balochistan seats.

Read More: Elections 2024 Pakistan: Latest party position

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has so far released unofficial results of 212 NA seats out of 265.

According to the unofficial results received from electoral watchdog, independent candidates were leading with 90 seats followed by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) 60 seats.

Meanwhile, Pakistan People s Party managed to secure 48 NA seats so far. Furthermore, MQM-P clinched eight NA seats and IPP and PML-Q got two seats each.

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