Latest Remarks By United States On Pakistan‘s Elections 2024
On Thursday, the United States expressed its interest in maintaining and nurturing its relationship with Pakistan as the South Asian nation conducted a crucial vote to determine its future. Despite the absence of clear election results, the polling day was marred by allegations of rigging by political parties, exacerbated by the caretaker government’s decision to shut down cellular and internet services for a significant part of the day.
Vedant Patel, the Principal Deputy Spokesperson of the U.S. Department of State, conveyed during a press conference in Washington that the U.S. is invested in the democratic process and is eager to take appropriate steps to sustain its relationship and partnership with the Government of Pakistan. He emphasized that Pakistan’s future leadership should be determined by the Pakistani people, and the U.S. remains committed to supporting the democratic process.
The U.S. State Department has faced challenging inquiries related to Pakistan since April 2022 when Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) faced removal, with former Prime Minister Imran Khan alleging U.S. involvement, a claim vehemently denied by American officials.
Leading up to Pakistan’s general elections, considered the largest in the country’s history, incidents of violence occurred, resulting in candidate deaths, injuries to party workers, and property damage. Patel condemned all instances of election-related violence, expressing concern about its broad impact on political parties, polling stations, election officers, and the election commission.
Addressing the restrictions on freedom of expression, Patel stated that the U.S. is monitoring reports of limitations on internet and cellphone access across Pakistan on polling day. He underscored the joint commitment of the U.S. and the international community to emphasize the importance of democratic institutions, a free press, a vibrant civil society, and increased opportunities for political participation for all citizens of Pakistan.
However, Patel refrained from commenting further on official election results, respecting the ongoing process. The U.S.’s stance reflects a delicate balancing act, expressing commitment to democratic values while acknowledging the complexities and challenges associated with the electoral process in Pakistan. The focus remains on supporting democratic institutions and fostering a conducive environment for political participation, underscoring the U.S.’s interest in a stable and democratic Pakistan.