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Nawaz Sharif named Shahid Khaqan Abbasi as interim PM

30 July, 2017

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leaders on Saturday named former federal minister for petroleum and natural resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi as the interim prime minister of Pakistan.

The decision was made at a meeting of PML-N parliamentary leaders at the Punjab House in Islamabad. They also discussed in detail the situation arises after SC verdict, in which Nawaz Sharif was disqualified. Abbasi will now serve for 45 days before the former PM's brother and Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif makes his way to the National Assembly and eventually gets elected as prime minister.

Nawaz Sharif on Saturday held two consultative meetings to tap his younger brother as his eventual successor. The PML-N also deliberated on the political and legal options to finalise a replacement after he was disqualified in the Panama Papers case by the Supreme Court.

Former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan and former Ehtesab Commission chairman Saifur Rehman also attended the party's consultative meeting along with Ishaq Dar, Khawaja Saad Rafique, Rana Tanveer and Abdul Qadir Baloch.

Another consultative session was being held with the party's core parliamentary committee.

Nawaz Sharif had taken his allies into confidence over the decision and called Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, Pakhtoonkhwa Milli Awami Party (PMAP) chief Mehmood Khan Achakzai and National Party chief Mir Hasil Bizejo.

Shahbaz Sharif will resign from his seat in the Punjab Assembly and as chief minister of the province. He is likely to be elected on Nawaz's constituency in NA-120 Lahore, a stronghold of the PML-N, and eventually be elected as the next prime minister. The participants also approved Shahbaz Sharif's name to permanently take over as the premier, which had already been foreseen.

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