Pakistan elects new prime minister

Pakistan’s parliament on Monday elected former opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif as the country's new prime minister, News.Az reports citing Anadolu Agency. 

Shehbaz, the younger brother of three-time former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, and a joint candidate of the combined opposition secured 174 votes in a 342-member lower legislative chamber, the National Assembly.

A minimum of 172 votes were required for a simple majority in the parliament.

Shehbaz's election came following a successful no-confidence vote against former premier Imran Khan on Sunday.

His opponent, former Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, who was the candidate of the ousted premier's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party, boycotted the elections following his party's decision to resign from the parliament.

In a passionate address to the house before boycotting the election, Qureshi said: "We cannot be part of this farce after proving that this entire exercise is the outcome of an international conspiracy."

Ousted Prime Minister Khan together with over 120 PTI lawmakers announced that they are resigning from the parliament and "taking to the streets against an imported government."

The resignations, however, will not be in effect until the speaker of the National Assembly accepts them, according to the country's constitution.

Khan accuses the US of toppling his government for his "independent foreign policy."


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