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Pakistan Supreme Court To Resume Hearings On PM Khan’s No-Confidence Saga

Prime Minister Imran Khan

Pakistan’s Supreme Court will resume hearings on April 6 to decide whether Prime Minister Imran Khan and his allies’ move to dissolve parliament breached the country’s constitution.

A five-judge panel has been hearing arguments from Khan’s lawyers and the opposition since April 4.

Khan lost his parliamentary majority last week and had been facing a no-confidence vote brought forward by a united opposition that he was expected to lose on April 3.

But the deputy speaker of the National Assembly, Qasim Suri, a member of Khan’s Tehrik-e Insaf party, rejected the motion as unconstitutional and part of foreign conspiracy.

The ruling allowed Khan to get the presidency -- a largely ceremonial role -- to dissolve parliament and order an election, which must be held within 90 days.

The opposition filed a petition with the Supreme Court to rule on whether the move to block the vote was constitutional.

The standoff has thrown the nuclear-armed country of 220 million people, which the military has ruled for extended periods since independence in 1947, into political turmoil.

Khan had claimed the no-confidence motion was an attack against him by the United States in retaliation for his close relations with Russia and China. But Washington has rejected that accusation.

The opposition accuses Khan of mismanaging the economy and foreign policy, and political analysts also say Khan has fallen out with Pakistan's powerful military, whose support is critical for any party to attain power.

Khan denies ever having the backing of the military, and the military also maintains that it has no involvement in the political process.

With reporting by Reuters, AP, AFP