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Pakistan's coalition leaders' meeting ends without result
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Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief Mian Nawaz Sharif and Pakistan People's Party (PPP) Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari concluded their meeting in Islamabad on Tuesday without any result that could well decide the fate of the ruling coalition.

Sharif and Zardari met for six hours in the latter's house in Islamabad to iron out differences over the judges restoration and other issues but did not make any decision.

Sharif tried to convince Zardari to accept his demands of judges' restoration, the president's impeachment and restoration of the 1973 constitution in the meeting.

PPP spokesman Farhatullah Babar said that both leaders discussed all important issues in detail and there would be another round of talks, which is to be held Wednesday in which two other coalition parties' leaders will also participate.

Information Minister Sherry Rehman described the meeting as "positive and cordial". "Consensus is being developed," she said.

Sharif and Zardari were scheduled to address a joint press conference after the meeting but it did not happen despite arrangements for the occasion.

On Monday, Sharif claimed that the PPP was not taking keen interest in resolving deposed judges. He also blamed the PPP for current price prices.

Sharif disclosed that the PPP did not take the PML-N in confidence for launching operations against militants in the northwestern Pakistani district of Swat.

Talking about the Feb. 18 general elections, Sharif said that it was a referendum against President Pervez Musharraf.

Sharif called on the coalition to solve the problems and vowed to continue the struggle till the end.

However, Sharif said that his party would not quit the coalition although it was not satisfied with what the PPP has done.

"The PPP did not fulfill promises especially on deposed judges' issue, but we do not want to quit the coalition," he said.

(Xinhua News Agency August 6, 2008)

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