[JURIST] Former Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif [BBC profile; party profile] on Monday urged the government of Pakistan to return to the rule of law and restore democracy in the country, now under emergency rule [JURIST bews archive]. At a press conference a day after his return from a seven-year exile [JURIST report] in Saudi Arabia, Sharif also called for the restoration of the judiciary, acknowledging superior court judges who have refused to take oaths under President Pervez Musharraf's Provisional Constitution Order [text as amended].
Sharif has filed nomination papers [BBC report] for general elections scheduled for January, but said Monday that unless Musharraf lifts the emergency, he will boycott the vote. Sharif was overthrown by Musharraf in a 1999 military coup; he was later sentenced to 14 years in prison for treason and corruption but was allowed go into exile in in 2000. The News has more. ANI has additional coverage.