Embattled President Pervez Musharraf on Sunday pledged his full support to the country's new government, saying that an era of democracy had begun in Pakistan following last month's elections.
"My brothers and sisters, you are seeing that a real democratic era has begun in Pakistan," Musharraf said at the Pakistan Day military parade in the capital Islamabad.
"We are proud that during the past eight years, not only did we lay the foundation of a real democracy, but we also put Pakistan on the path of progress and prosperity," he said.
"Whichever new government is formed, it will have my full support," he said, adding that he hoped the new administration would maintain peace, economic growth and vigorously combat terrorism and extremism.
The new coalition government led by Musharraf's opponents, who trounced his allies in the February 18 general elections, appears set for a confrontation with Musharraf over his sacking of dozens of judges last November.
On Tuesday, Musharraf is set to swear in new premier Yousuf Raza Gilani from the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) of slain ex-premier Benazir Bhutto, which is forming a government with Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League-N.
Bhutto was killed in a suicide and gun attack on December 27 in Rawalpindi and had stayed in exile in London and Dubai during Musharraf's military rule.
Musharraf grabbed power in October 1999 after overthrowing Sharif in a bloodless coup.
Last Mod: 23 Mart 2008, 14:28