Pakistan's top court bars former PM's loyalist from election

Pakistan's top court bars former PM's loyalist from election
A Pakistani worker fixes newly printed posters of the candidates for upcoming parliamentary elections at a printing press market in Karachi, Pakistan. Pakistan is scheduled to hold parliamentary elections on July 25, that will mark the first time the country has held three consecutive elections without a coup. (AP Photo/Shakil Adil)

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistan’s Supreme Court has barred a former Cabinet minister and loyalist of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif from running in next month’s parliamentary elections.

The court found Danyal Aziz guilty of making critical speeches against judges following last year’s disqualification of Sharif by the country’s top court.

Thursday’s court order says Aziz, a leader in Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League party, cannot take part in the July 25 vote.

The order is yet another blow to the party as Aziz was expected to easily win a seat in parliament.

On Wednesday, another court disqualified former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi — also a prominent leader in the PML — from running in the July elections for concealing assets. Abbasi succeeded Sharif after his disqualifications from office over concealing assets abroad.