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U.S. leaders observe Pakistan poll

Feb. 18, 2008 at 1:21 PM

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, Feb. 18 (UPI) -- U.S. Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., who observed the Pakistani election Monday, praised the hard work of those involved in conducting the poll.

Kerry said it is important the rights of Pakistanis are protected and to have a government that will bring them together to solve their problems, the state-run Associated Press of Pakistan reported.

"We will like to see these elections to be the new opportunity for the government to restore stability, either through coalition or majority," he was quoted as saying, adding, "We have enormous respect for the sovereignty, history and culture of the Pakistani people."

U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, also in Pakistan, was informed by Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf Monday said the winning party or a coalition would form the next government and he would work with it according to the constitution, the Pakistani news agency reported.

Jackson Lee is the co-chairwoman of the Pakistan Caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Jackson Lee said, as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, she shared the feeling of her fellow lawmakers who wish to see a democratic, stable and strong Pakistan that continues to play its important role for peace and progress.

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