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Imran wants IMF aid to Pakistan stalled over ‘rigged’ elections

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Rawalpindi, Feb 22 (IANS) Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) founder Imran Khan will write to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), demanding to stop its support for Pakistan due to the “rigged elections”, party leader Ali Zafar said on Thursday, media reports said.“Imran Khan will issue a letter to the IMF today. The charter of IMF, EU, and other organisations stipulates that they can function or provide loan to a country only if there’s good governance,” Zafar told journalists after meeting Khan at Rawalpindi’s Adiala Jail, Geo News reportedZafar claimed that the “most important section” of their charter is that a country should be democratic. “If there’s no democracy, neither can these institutions function in such countries, nor should they,” he said, Geo News reported.“The basic pillar of democracy is free and fair elections. However, the entire world saw how the nation’s mandate was stolen. Let’s leave pre-poll rigging aside, in post-poll rigging, victory was snatched from PTI’s winning candidates,” Zafar said.This isn’t the first time that the opposition PTI will try to affect the IMF deal, as in 2022, its ex-leader Shaukat Tarin had told PTI’s then Finance Mministers of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab that they should “tell the IMF that the commitment made to them cannot be fulfilled” and to cite the recent devastation caused by floods in the country as the reason behind it.Pakistan secured a short-term $3 billion programme from the IMF last year, which helped the country avert a sovereign debt default. It will run out next month and securing a new and much bigger one is widely seen as the priority for the new administration.With the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), and their allies striking a deal to form a coalition government, the PTI and some other political parties have altogether rejected the elections and announced country-wide protests, Geo News reported.–IANSint/san/arm

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