Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry defended the fairness of the February 8th general elections, expressing surprise at the “negative tone” of some international statements regarding the polls.
Despite complex security challenges and “misplaced concerns,” the ministry emphasized the peaceful and successful conduct of the elections, highlighting the enthusiastic participation of millions of voters. It clarified that only mobile services were suspended on polling day for security reasons, not the entire internet.
Independent Candidates Aligned with Khan Triumph:
Independent candidates affiliated with former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s party, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), emerged as the biggest surprise, winning the most National Assembly seats with 98 (22 still unclaimed). This defied pre-election expectations favoring the Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PMLN) party, which currently holds 69 seats. The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) follows with 51 seats.
Hung Parliament Creates Uncertainty:
With no party securing a majority in the 342-seat Assembly, forming a government remains unclear. Even if PMLN or PPP win all remaining seats, they will fall short of the 169-seat threshold. This leaves the selection of the next prime minister open to negotiation and coalition-building among the various parties.