Pakistan's Supreme Court has ordered President Pervez Musharraf to step down as military chief and take the oath of office by December first.
The court, which is stacked with judges appointed by General Musharraf, (Friday) also declared that the November third imposition of a state of emergency and suspension of the constitution were legal.
Pakistan's attorney general (Malik Mohammed Qayyum) says President Musharraf will take the oath of office early next week. The Supreme Court dismissed the final legal challenge to General Musharraf's October re-election victory on Thursday. Meanwhile, opposition leaders are planning their strategy for the upcoming January eighth parliamentary elections, with exiled former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif set to return to Pakistan within days. Members of Mr. Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League party say the former prime minister will return before Monday's registration deadline for January's elections. He added that Mr. Sharif held a "farewell meeting" today with King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, where he has lived in exile.