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EU Again Calls on Musharraf to Lift Emergency Decree


The European Union has again called on Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf to end the country's state of emergency and set a firm date for elections.

Speaking Wednesday in Strasbourg, EU External Relations Commissioner Benita Ferrero-Waldner and her Portuguese counterpart, Manuel Lobo Antunes, said the imposition of emergency rule has endangered the growth of democratic institutions in Pakistan.

General Musharraf has said elections will be held before January ninth. But he has not said when the constitution will be restored or the emergency decree lifted.

The EU has been considering sending a mission to observe the polls. But Ferrero-Waldner says such a mission will not be possible unless the decree is lifted quickly.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters and AFP.