Diplomats from the United Kingdom and the United States underscored the imperative of conducting fair elections on February 8 during meetings with PML-N leader Nawaz Sharif and PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari. The upcoming general elections in Pakistan, scheduled a month later, have been marked by concerns and accusations of an uneven political playing field, voiced by political parties and civil society.
British High Commissioner Jane Marriott conveyed the significance of holding inclusive elections to Pakistan’s future in a meeting with Nawaz in Lahore, according to a statement from the PML-N. The discussion, attended by PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif, Senator Ishaq Dar, and Senior Vice President Maryam Nawaz, delved into matters of mutual interest.
Moreover, Nawaz stressed the importance of fostering strong relations between Pakistan and Britain, emphasizing the vital role of Pakistanis residing in Britain in strengthening bilateral friendship.
In a separate meeting, US Ambassador Donald Blome visited Bilawal at Zardari House in Islamabad to discuss current political issues, highlighting the importance of free, fair, and inclusive elections.
In addition, the US Embassy’s press release noted the ambassador’s engagements with a broad range of Pakistani political stakeholders, touching upon the robustness of the US-Pakistan trade and investment relationship and the development of the US-Pakistan “Green Alliance” framework.
The PPP statement indicated that the discussions primarily focused on ways to enhance bilateral and trade relations between the US and Pakistan. The diplomatic engagements reflect international concerns and interests in ensuring transparency and fairness in Pakistan’s electoral process.