Le Pakistan après Benazir Bhutto

L'assassinat de Benazir Bhutto, l'ancien Premier ministre du Pakistan, aggrave considérablement la crise que traverse ce pays. Dirigeante du parti politique le plus populaire du pays, elle transcendait largement les divisions ethniques et sectaires. Son retour d'exil en octobre semblait un pas vers une solution pour surmonter la dangereuse fragmentation du pays ; son meurtre dissipe ces espoirs. Le président Pervez Moucharraf doit prendre des mesures immédiates, avec en priorité la formation d'un gouvernement d'unité nationale, pour empêcher le Pakistan d'éclater.

En décidant que son parti, le Parti du peuple, participerait aux élections législatives de janvier, Bhutto a lancé une bouée de sauvetage à Moucharraf, fragilisé par de multiples insurrections, une menace terroriste à travers tout le pays et une absence totale de légitimité. Tant Moucharraf que ses partisans à Washington espéraient que la participation des principaux partis aux élections mettrait fin à la crise de gouvernance et apporterait le soutien populaire voulu pour une confrontation décisive avec les talibans et avec Al Quaïda.

Mais les élections vont sans doute être reportées. Moucharraf risque d'être obligé d'imposer à nouveau l'état d'urgence, comme il l'a fait en novembre, si l'instabilité augmente. Des violences auraient éclaté dans plusieurs villes à travers le pays. C'est le chaos total qui pourrait s'installer à Karachi, une métropole multi-ethnique. Pendant les années 1990, des violences entre le parti de Bhutto et un pari ethnique local – allié aujourd'hui à Moucharraf – ont fait des milliers de morts.

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