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tv   Inside Story 2018 Ep 203  Al Jazeera  July 23, 2018 2:32pm-3:01pm +03

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station that he had with me a couple of days ago i will discuss the regional issues and mainly the situation in syria japan has recorded its highest ever temperatures people there struggle with a scorching heat wave the mercury rose to forty one point one celsius in the city of goma gaia that's northwest of tokyo meteorologists say that stately twelve degrees hotter than the average for this time of the year at least thirty people have died in the past month due to the heat french politicians of questioned the interior minister gillard calm over what he knew about the president's former bodyguard beating up a protester an example nala seen here is the rise of the manual mccrone has been charged after a video of the assault appeared online column said that he was told about the incident a day after it happened in may. those are the headlines born usefully on al-jazeera after today's inside story with next.
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pakistanis will go to the polls for a general election this week the outcome which needs a second peaceful comes. in the country's history but what role is the military playing and how powerful is it this is inside story. hello there and welcome to the program. tens of millions of voters in pakistan will head to the polls this week to choose a new government it's been a tumultuous few weeks for the country of nearly two hundred million people earlier
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this month and to corruption court for found former prime minister nawaz sharif guilty of corruption his posse is one of several contesting this election if it all goes according to plan it would be just the second time there's been a peaceful transfer of power from one civilian government to another now pakistan has swung between civilian and military rules its independence from britain in one nine hundred forty seven the run up to bis vote has been marked by political tension and attacks that have killed more than one hundred and fifty people the government has deployed hundreds of thousands of soldiers to monitor and god polling stations let's take a look at some of the main candidates in this election. running with the not was faction of the pakistan muslim league now he's the brother of the former prime minister nawaz sharif who was recently found guilty of corruption but adare is on the pakistan people. take it the twenty nine year old is the son of former prime minister benazir bhutto who's assassinated in two thousand and seven and he too has
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faced allegations of corruption and former cricketer emraan khan is the leader of the terek insaaf party which is particularly popular among young voters khan has been vocal in his opposition to government corruption let's hand out from what two of the candidates had to say. we can form a government in pakistan where a minister will be afraid of corruption but our national council will catch a prime minister and ministers as it happens in europe or. the i decide i want our story for you i want to authority to solve your problems i want to power sort of the laborers could get to work for their hard work i want to sort of do so that the youth can get into creation unemployment i want power so that the farmers can get the price for their crops i want to authority for the woman to get their rights i want power to protect the rights of minorities i want are so ready to empower democracy and i will god willing to succeed in the struggle now bags of
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military was formed in one nine hundred forty seven shortly after the country gained independence from britain it's the sixth largest in the world in terms of active military personnel and the biggest among muslim countries it is seize control of several civilian governments over the years and forcing martial law to restore order and has dismissed members of parliament and as for three wars with india which killed at least one hundred thousand people plus it seen several standoffs on its border with afghanistan. ok well let's bring in our panel now and joining us from islamabad maria sultan director general of the south asians to dick's to belittle institute in washington d.c. via skype michael kuhlmann senior associate in south and southeast asia at the woodrow wilson center and also in islamabad the executive editor of geo news a very warm welcome to all of you america to start with you what is the army want from these elections. i think these are one of the more. and one with
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watershed elections in pakistan's history the army's expectations are that it should number one it should be peaceful as far as the transition is concerned number two of course they want a government which should be responsive to words development as a priority and of course corruption which answer should be there but the bigger question now where there's all the underlying tension as you can see is primarily about the civil military relations and all to the fact that the state institutions should not come at odds when it's coming to the issue of the state and when it comes to the state's ability to respond back to that as primarily a couple of things which is at this moment at the back of the military thinking process ok and of course some of those are not be able. why there should be three hundred seventy one thousand soldiers monitoring this vote they're noticing that this is three times the number that we had in the last elections in two thousand
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and thirteen. and that is from mainly because of the fact because the election commission has number one requested for it and number two because of the fact and the fear that maybe there would be rigging on the polling day so you needed in honest interlocutor now for that the question is will the other candidates be putting pressure whether there will be similar demonstrations which will be marking that because if you look at the actual election process which requires both political parties representatives or for that matter any number of representatives which are available at that polling station to be there once the word count happens so it's never about casting the water is always about counting the work so you want that process to be transparent and you want that to be something in which people believe that their mandate has not been stolen ok how much of it is pick up on that last point that the soldiers are there to ensure that there's a transparent election is that something that you're happy with i think. the. secretary of the electoral commission. there. you are deploying the
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troops inside the polling stations so they said that we think that there will be. the need a lot of. manpower to maintain the law and order situation especially in areas where the civil administration is not very powerful so that's why we are deploying the. army troops inside the polling stations some of the political parties are raising a lot of questions on that but i think that if a soldier is deployed inside a polling station with a weapon and a uniform i think he cannot interfere in the polling process but he will be responsible only for maintaining law and order ok military interference things happening next. we have a history and if you go through the history of pakistan both so we can i can say
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that in the past there was a lot of interference by the. intelligence agencies in our election process some of the cases were heard in the supreme court of august and that this interference is documented recently in the us going to khan case but this time. there are some political parties who are saying their military should not be looked deployed inside the polling stations and some of the political parties they are not speaking openly but they have written letters and that they are talking privately to the military often shows that they think that there is some interference but the other side is saying that no we are neutral and we are not interfering so let's hope for the best and i think that. whatever is happening especially whatever happened last last night in broward county after the and also went off verdict
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against up the imminent leader of an evil bussy then about slogans by the so by his supporters against some state institutions so i think that said he must be prevented and i hope that the military will not interfere. electoral process or a different it should be very careful michel we will get to a promise in just about i just want to pick up. on that point that you make kind of his sentence yes there on saturday he was given a life sentence three days four days before the vote but this is a case that's been pending in court for six or seven years and many people as you just said do point to the military having pressured the courts to pass that sentence and it's not the only one of its kind is it that we've seen against p.l.m. and candidates. you see i am following this case since last six years and actually . the narcotics force is involved in this case and the narcotics force
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is headed by a serving army officer and he was complaining since since last three four years that some military officials are contacting him and they are putting pressure on him and they want that. dictation from them and that's why. they are trying to convict me and this. doc is actually. which is used in medicines it is not used as a drug in a pakistani piece. he has been having at my last time at length to move forward to see if is there is a politically motivated case or not. yeah. majority opinion and. the sun majority of the analysts. journalists. it is a political. ok
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michael what's the view from outside of pakistan i mean a lot of media looking at these elections and the headlines are that the military is interfering on unprecedented levels what's the view from washington well i mean i think if you look at all of the developments in recent months starting with some of those that have already been mentioned here the fact that several very senior leaders have been sentenced to prison. so close before the election like no wash or eat the former prime minister and his daughter mario received jail sentences. within days of the election and there have been arrests. in numbers there have also been censorship media censorship of outlets that are perceived to be too pretty to be focusing too much on the pm alam and they're perceived to be too favorable to the few million and of course the military itself in pakistan it does have
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a reputation for interfering or getting involved in politics in a big way when it's not ruling the country directly and also the military has sparred with the p.l.o. and significantly during the last two years at the time in power and terms of some decisions that and some news that no washer east such as publicly put the sizing in to pay for not sufficiently against terrorists that threaten india and afghanistan or that are based and they are based on pakistani soil and i believe that the washer is also suggested a willingness to. speak more and engage more with india than the military would have liked all of this to me suggests that you know you can't rule out the. here that the military is trying to behind the scenes engineer some type of outcome that could undercut the pm elam's electoral prospects but i don't think we should overstate the role of the military here i mean certainly the pm
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a land i think in my view would least is there is corruption in the ranks and i think one could argue that the party did not do the best job of trying to explain all these questions about it so it's offshore assets and all that but at the end of the day i think what the what the pakistani army wants the most from an electoral is a weak coalition government that would enable the military to have influence and i think in that sense there would be a need for the p m l m p m l and not to be able to sweep to and out rate their career and absolute majority in the election so it's a complicated story and i think it's important not to necessarily subscribe to the dominant narrative that the military is completely stage managing something in the p.l.m. you know is completely innocent in all of this i think the middle ground is perhaps more accurate and absolutely and also maria not to forget the imran khan is a very popular candidates he's he's standing on a platform promising to fight corruption of course which we've seen the piano man
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absolutely tainted with over the last few years he's also planning to be transparent and break with the gnostic policies and he is very popular with the young isn't he. well you're spot on as far as popularity is concerned but i think this is for the first time that all actors in pakistan and pakistan's national security stand tested that means that the political parties have to for the first time actually come out and actually own different stuff you know for example and certainly for buffy the question of epidemic is not something that you can just such a sign yes they could be judicial activism which you are seeing and maybe that is leading to this this underhand sumption but the fact remains that there is corruption the fact remains that there are other candidates of all of the parties which are also being subject to yes there are bigger questions in terms of how much and what level of party leadership is being affected by this process and let's not forget the most important thing is that it is all pre-election the most important
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factor would be done once the people go to the polls because it is then that the people would actually speak and speak for talks on and i think this is where most parties are actually afraid whether it is p.t.i. yes they have the youth but have to done the development work they haven't have the pm and done the. gone forward on the development yes but have they dealt effectively with corruption perhaps not be silent on national security issues is a just in india case is not so simple i think there are not there because if you look at the policy they have been very square they have been on civil military i would say there was an equation when it came to afghanistan and even in terms of india despite whatever the talk was and at the end of the day then there is also the bigger silent majority which is not spoken but which is emerging these are the other coalition partners such as the m m a's such as the. other independents because it is going to be perhaps the most unknown factor or the wildcard which
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we're having at this moment are going to be the independents and it would also be the people's party were it's great to be so i think at this moment every police. can party stands tested along with the military in which that how it's going to balance itself out and at the end of the day on election day the people of pakistan can speak ok once for all at least we would have some clarity with emotions are growing ok but there's been quite a lot of coverage and chris as i'm in the run up to these elections especially when it comes to the media we've seen a lot of restrictions placed on door newspaper its distribution has been disrupted in military areas and indeed on geo t.v. which is your channel how have you felt the pressure. you see i am not a spokesperson of the geo t.v. but as far as the facts are concerned nobody can deny the facts that judy was shut down many times in the last couple of months and dawn is also facing the same
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problems. these days most of the un go to including we cannot do live shows and then we ask our management. who pressurised you. not to do live shows so this here there is no pressure from the military but this is our own it men view don't want that anything against judiciary or army should go on air so that five are doing it. going to court or choice so this is that there is no pressure but many people they are aware that there are some hidden pressures and there is also history of these kind of precedent and this is not a new thing because i am covering elections other journalists in nine hundred eighty eight so this is my seventh election so for me situation was same in two thousand and thirteen and two thousand election i was banned i was not on the screen but amendment should have banned me so before that in two thousand to the
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situation was sam so in two thousand eighteen if g.o.p. or dawn or any other t.v. channel or newspaper is facing any pressure this is not new. it's a long history so what if we compare. the election of two thousand and eight two thousand and eight with two thousand and eighteen so situation is slightly better ok it can't people are people talking a lot more openly now about the role of the military in pakistan you see i never heard. a questions from the political and intellectual elite of one job in the past about the role of military and intelligence agencies in politics whenever i go to universities and all the students they ask me questions. previously i i face these questions only in baluchistan and sin and. so a few days ago i was in
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a university in rawalpindi and young students there were asking me these kind of questions that there is political management by those people who are not supposed to interfere in politics and last night what happened in rubble twenty outside the court. the n.t. drug court and the narcotics court the people openly raised slogans against some intelligence agencies and some integer sions and. gentle air door slogans but they are available on social media so this is you see as as a citizen of this country this is very much concerned about the situation because i never heard these kind of slogans these kind of questions this kind of criticism in punjab because there is an impression that army belongs to punjab because punjab is that ok biggest province so i think and i feel that there is a realization within the army that this situation is not good and if there is
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a complaint from any political party or any civil institutions the complaint must be addressed ok michael do you think this role of social media as a positive one and that you have seen attempts in pakistan to block the more traditional media but is one of his just saying it doesn't matter because on social media everything is available anyway. well i mean this is true and social media is a blessing and a curse word and pakistan and every other country as well i mean what what i feel is somewhat disturbing is that what we're seeing over the last few months the efforts by the state in pakistan and to to to essentially. target crackdown on those on social media that are seen as being overly critical of the military and the intelligence establishment and i think that that may be a realization on the part of the state based on that social media is powerful and i think as as the state is cracked down more on you know anti-military critics or
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military critics offline in traditional media that you know social media has become a bit of a redoubt and a bastion for the more liberal components of the country and those willing to keep criticising the military and therefore there's a need to move into the social media sphere to crack down on those. on those that are critical of the military there and what we have seen over the last few months is unfortunately disappearances of some folks who have been particularly critical of the army so it's true that social media is obviously a very very vibrant spear and it will continue to be so but i think that what you're starting to see in countries like pakistan as good as it becomes as they also may be to become much more influential and you have these critics that have their voices amplified on there there's a need to deal with those critics so to speak as well so it's actually a rather precarious state of affairs i want to move running out of time as well to move on to more international masses at the beginning of this year washington comes
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over a billion dollars in annual security because of what it said was pakistan's support for terrorist groups in relations with the u.s. of never being what maria is improving ties with the united states on anyone's agenda doesn't even matter because traditionally foreign policy has to be. full of the military. i think foreign policy is an issue for all back sunny leaders who are becoming to far no the moment they will take office this is something which is going to be staring them back squarely and very strongly but the issue which we're dealing at this moment is is the bigger question in terms of how different hours to be in pakistan actually settled and how the stuff boards are managed listening to the two colleagues who are just speaking i think there is also something which the facts on the military said today and that is that if there are
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claims that they're interfering that the supreme court must investigate all these allegations so there is also a bigger responsibility for that but there is a bigger you know there has to be a fine line in terms of what constitutes in terms of being anti-military in terms of its political aspirations or for that matter a civilian in a drawback in n. terms of engagement but on the other hand it's also in terms of whether to target the institution percy so i think these are are hard times but most important it is a learning times and these are this is how the democracy would actually mature in packs and ok and we believe that eventually things will settle ok just in the last minute or so that we've got left always saying that democracy maturing in pakistan is seen as the second democratic transition between civilian governments in the country's history but do you think it's going to be viewed as such. you see daylight when the fifth is a very important day. and i think some people and some forces there tried
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their level best to delay the election but the fear and now some people some forces are trying to manipulate the election so i think that if they believe in pakistan if. they have some love for they have somebody suspect for pakistan they should not try to manipulate. july twenty fifth election because if this election will become controversial then every nobody will gain anything every pakistani going to be a loser so i can only appeal all the people all the institutions that let's. make a united front and try to make a transparent and free and fair election on july twenty fifth my full time in the not so many problems with everybody and i'm telling you i'm warning them. it's hard to say i think that we're going to have a long argument century there is not going to be any one party with an absolute
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majority and there's going to need to be a need for a very fractious and perhaps extended negotiation to cobble together a coalition which could take a very long time and i think that you know that brings to mind you know there to speak some very interesting power brokers such as are dari from the p.p.p. even would be in a position to try to negotiate in ways to bring their party into the fold somehow it's going to be a very interesting week indeed ok many things to put as we have to stop that we will keep discussing this topic here on al-jazeera and i'm sure we revisit it again on inside story for the moment the results on michael coleman and how much may thank you very much for joining us and thank you too for watching you can see the program again any time by visiting a website that's al-jazeera dot com for further discussion to go to our facebook page that's facebook dot com for slash a.j. inside story it was a join the conversation on twitter our handle is at a.j. inside story from me laura kyle and the whole team here it's my finale.
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we're awaiting well this idea. that when they're on line it's undoubtedly chief goal. of an equality in our society today or if you join a sunset criminal justice system is dysfunctional right now this is a dialogue what does it feel like to go back for the first time everyone has a voice and allow refugees to flee the speakers for
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a change join the conversation on our. new poll ranks mexico city is the pull with worst in the world for sexual violence many women are attacked while moving in the crowded spaces of the metro buses and even at the hands of taxi drivers the conversation starts with do you have a boyfriend you're very pretty and young you feel unsafe threatened you think about how to react what do i do if this gets way no money on a uses a new service it's called loyal drive it's for women passages only and drawn by women drivers pull through some extra features like a panic button and twenty four seven monitoring of drive is a suspected money laundering operation but this time it was different. an accidental discovery the wharfs initial suspicions and on rivals some unprecedented scale of systemic international corruption people in power investigates
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a racket of such magnitude that it threaten the government and redefine the rules of impunity. the carwash. on a jersey of. i am sam is a dan in doha with a look at the headlines here now dizzier all three gunmen who stormed the kurdish regional government building in every field in northern iraq have been killed the group shot its way into the building in the early morning hours with one attacker blowing himself up one worker was killed and two policemen were injured in the operation iran is condemning a tweet by u.s. president dog trump calling it a passive reaction to comments by iran's president trump warm house and rouhani of consequences if you threaten the u.s. it's in response to a one hundred speech saying war with iran is the mother of all wars the senior
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commander in iran's rouge revolutionary guard meanwhile says trump's tweet amounts to cycle.


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