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Commonwealth Suspends Pakistan

  • VOA News

The Commonwealth has suspended Pakistan for its imposition of emergency rule.

The secretary of the Commonwealth (Don McKinnon) said Thursday the 53-nation group voted to suspended Pakistan pending the restoration of democracy and the rule of law in the country.

Pakistan had asked the Commonwealth to postpone Thursday's vote, which took place on the eve of the group's biennial summit in Uganda.

More than 50 heads of state and government are expected to attend the gathering, which consists mostly of Britain and her former colonies. The official head of the Commonwealth, Britain's Queen Elizabeth, arrived in the Ugandan capital, Kampala, on Wednesday.

Pakistan was last kicked out of the Commonwealth in 1999, after General Pervez Musharraf seized power in a coup. The group reinstated Pakistan five years later.

In addition to Pakistan, meeting participants are expected to discuss key trade issues and climate change.
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