Monitoring situation in Pak, committed to democracy : US

Monitoring situation in Pak, committed to democracy : US

 The United States has said it is monitoring the situation in Pakistan and reiterated its commitment to a civilian-led democracy there.

The strong statement in support of the civilian government gains significance in the wake of the increased tension between the government led by the President, Asif Ali Zardari, and the Pakistani military led by its Army Chief, Gen Ashfaq Pervez Kayani.

This has given rise to speculation of another military coup in Pakistan, which since it gained its independence in 1947 has been ruled by the Army for majority of the years.

"We support a civilian-led government, we have strong relations with the Pakistani military as well, and we want to see the parties work well together – this is a matter for Pakistan to settle.

I don't think it's appropriate for the United States to be in the middle of it," the State Department spokesperson, Victoria Nuland, told reporters during an off camera news conference yesterday.

The US Embassy in Islamabad, led by the Ambassador, Cameron Munter, is in constant touch with leaders of Pakistan, she said.

"We continue to have broad contacts with the Pakistani leadership. Ambassador Munter is in country. He's seeing a broad cross-section of people. We have said that we are ready to discuss the parliamentary report when they are ready to discuss it with us," Nuland said.

Responding to questions on the tension between the Pak army and the civilian government, Nuland said this is an internal matter of Pakistan.

"With regard to some of the press reporting we've seen in recent days it's obviously an internal matter for Pakistan to settle.

We are monitoring it.We want to see all parties in Pakistan behave in a manner consistent with Pakistan's constitution, with its democratic processes, civil discourse, et cetera," she said.