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Pakistan’s PM ousted in no-confidence vote

STORY: Supporters of Pakistan’s opposition parties celebrate outside parliament following the ousting of Prime Minister Imran Khan.Khan lost a vote of no confidence in parliament on Sunday after being deserted by coalition partners.They blame him for the country’s crumbling economy, and accuse him of failing to deliver on his campaign promises.After a 13-hour session beset by repeated delays, the presiding speaker of the lower house Ayaz Sadiq announced the result of the vote:”174 members have recorded their votes in favor of the Resolution. Consequently, the Resolution of Vote of No-Confidence against Mr. Imran Khan, the Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan has been passed by a majority of the total membership of the National Assembly.”Two sources said the voting came after Khan met with the country’s powerful army chief, as criticism mounted over delays in the parliamentary process.Analysts said there were signs that Khan had lost the support of the army, which has ruled the country for nearly half of its 75-year history.Khan, instead, insists he’s the victim of an international conspiracy, claiming the United States wanted him gone for his recent foreign policy moves, including a trip to Moscow to meet President Vladimir Putin.Washington has rejected the charge but it has resonated with his supporters who also took to the streets of Islamabad following the vote.Khan’s ouster, after three and a half years in office, extends Pakistan’s unwanted record for political instability: No prime minister has completed their full term since independence in 1947, although Khan is the first to be removed through a no-confidence vote.Opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif is the front-runner to lead the nuclear-armed nation of 220 million.

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