Pakistani president hands 'nuclear button' to PM

© 24.uaPakistani President Asif Ali Zardari
Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari - Sputnik International
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Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari has handed control over the country's nuclear arsenal to Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani.

Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari has handed control over the country's nuclear arsenal to Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, the Dawn newspaper has said in its online edition.

The prime minister will now chair the National Command Authority, which controls all aspects of the country's nuclear arsenal. The Authority includes ministers for foreign affairs, defense, finance and interior, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, chief of army staff, chief of naval staff and chief of air staff.

"Transferring the chairmanship of the National Command Authority to the Prime Minister is giant step forward to empowering the elected Parliament and the Prime Minister," the Indian Express said.

Zardari also said that the constitutional amendment, which allows the President to dismiss the prime minister and dissolve the parliament, will also be abolished by December.

The move is seen as an attempt to ease domestic political pressure as an amnesty protecting over 8,000 officials from legal persecution expired on Saturday.

Though Zardari is still protected from prosecution as president, his political opponents may now challenge his eligibility for the post in the Supreme Court of Pakistan.

 

MOSCOW, November 29 (RIA Novosti)

 

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