Pakistan’s ruling party asks people to stay calm

ISLAMABAD (AP) — The Latest on developments in Pakistan (all times local):

5:20 p.m.

Pakistan’s ruling party has asked its supporters to remain peaceful despite what it describes as “unjustified disqualification” of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif by the country’s Supreme Court.

Khawaja Saad Rafique, a leader of the ruling Pakistan Muslim League, says it’s unfortunate that no elected prime minister in the country’s history has been allowed to complete his full term. He says Sharif will remain in people’s hearts.

Rafique pledged their party will emerge as a more powerful political force in the next parliamentary elections.

Zafar Ullah, another leader from Sharif’s party, says the allegations against the prime minister were baseless.

Several other leaders from the ruling party praised Sharif at the joint press conference but have yet to announce his successor.


1:30 p.m.

A spokesman for Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif says the premier has stepped down despite having reservations about the court order that disqualified him from serving.

In a brief statement, Sharif’s office said Sharif relinquished his charge as prime minister after learning that the Supreme Court disqualified him because of corruption allegations.

The statement claims that justice has not been done with Sharif, but the prime minister stepped down to show his respect for the judiciary and rule of law.


12:35 p.m.

Pakistan’s Supreme Court in a unanimous decision has asked the country’s anti-corruption body to file corruption charges against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, his two sons and daughter for concealing their assets.

The request to the National Accountability Bureau comes after a five-judge panel ruled Sharif “disqualified” to continue as prime minister and removing him from parliament.

Sharif may not appeal the court’s rulings. There was no immediate comment from Sharif’s office.


12:25 p.m.

Pakistan’s Supreme Court has disqualified Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif from serving because of allegations of…

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