Government (left) and PTI leaders during election date talks in Islamabad, on April 28, 2023, in this still taken from a YouTube video.


Government (left) and PTI leaders during election date talks in Islamabad, on April 28, 2023, in this still taken from a YouTube video.
  • SC-directed moot to take place at 9pm instead of 11am.
  • Leaders from both sides cast aspersions over dialogue.
  • PTI demands dissolution of assemblies before May 14.

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM)-led government and the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) are set to hold their “final” round of negotiations today (Tuesday), with leaders from both sides casting aspersions on them.

The negotiations between the coalition government and the main opposition party — earlier scheduled at 11am — will now take place at 9pm in Senate Secretariat, Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani said in a statement.

The Senate chairman said that the change was made due to the busy schedules of the members of the negotiation committees from both sides. “The new negotiation timings are expected to help facilitate the discussions between the government and PTI to address pressing issues in the country.”

Hours before the negotiations, PTI Chairman Imran Khan said that he is ready for simultaneous elections if the PDM dissolves all assemblies — Sindh, Balochistan, and national — before May 14 — the date Supreme Court has set for Punjab’s polls.

In conversation with journalists in Karachi, PTI Secretary General Asad Umar said that the PDM-led government’s intentions are not good about the negotiations.

The talks are being held to end an impasse over the timing of general elections across the country, which has fuelled political tensions in the country, with the Supreme Court also urging the political forces to negotiate and find out a solution to the prevailing political turmoil.

Earlier, the top court had directed the political parties to decide on the election date by April 26, but no progress was made till the deadline. In the April 25 hearing, the apex court mentioned that it cannot ask parties to hold negotiations forcefully.

Talking on Geo News‘ programme Capital Talk, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif called the deposed prime minister a “confused person” who backtracks on a majority of his decisions.

“I believe, we should not be negotiating with a person like this,” he said, while also asking the Supreme Court to end its “infighting” instead of asking political parties to negotiate.

Federal Minister Mian Javed Latif has also spoken against the talks and said that negotiations aren’t conducted with terrorists’ wings.

“Talks are never held with those who throw petrol bombs nor with those who are instruments of world powers. Negotiations are not held with those who talk about Mir Jaffer, Mir Sadiq,” Latif said.

Meanwhile, the PTI had also warned that if the arrests of its party leaders and workers continue, then the talks could derail, and when police raided PTI President Parvez Elahi’s home Friday night, it drew strong criticism from the party — but so far, they have called off the talks.

The Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) — the party whose leader is the PDM chief — has also decided to stay out of the negotiations, warning that the talks would bear no fruit.


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