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Pakistan Opposition Considers Candidate for PM after Election Victory


The party of Pakistan's late former Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto, met Friday to discuss their choice for the next prime minister after securing victory in Monday's polls.

Party officials say a top contender for the post is PPP Vice President Makhdoom Amin Fahim. Friday's meeting ended without an announcement and party officials say discussions will continue over the next few days.

On Thursday, the PPP and the other big winner in general elections, Nawaz Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League party, said they would work together to form a government of national consensus.

Ms. Bhutto's widower, Asif Ali Zardari, now the head of the PPP, says he wants to form a broad government, but one excluding the main party that backs President Pervez Musharraf. That party came in a distant third in the balloting.

In a move that might spell trouble for Mr. Musharraf, the PPP and Mr. Sharif's party could - with support from smaller parties - gain the two-thirds majority in parliament needed to impeach the president.

In an opinion editorial in The Washington Post newspaper Friday, President Musharraf said he is ready to work with the new parliament to address key issues affecting Pakistan.

The president has said he hopes for a "harmonious coalition" following the defeat of his political allies in Monday's parliamentary elections. Some opposition leaders have called his resignation, which he has brushed off.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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