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Zardari reiterates to protect democracy, provincial autonomy at all costs

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Peoples Party co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari on Tuesday reiterated the commitment to uphold democracy, citizen’s freedoms and autonomy of the federating units. The former president released a statement on the eve of 39th martyrdom anniversary of former Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. Zardari stated that Bhutto gave the country a consensus Constitution based on the principles of respect for human rights and autonomy of federating units. Furthermore, the PPP unanimously government gave the 18th…

Italian regions vote in favour of autonomy in shadow of Catalonia crisis

MILAN: Two wealthy regions of northern Italy voted overwhelmingly on Sunday for greater autonomy in referendums that could fan regional tensions in Europe at a time when Spain is striving to prevent Catalonia from breaking away. Millions of people in Lombardy and Veneto — both run by the once openly secessionist Lega Nord party — voted more than 90 percent for “yes”, according to preliminary results released just before midnight (2200 GMT). Ballots closed at 2100 GMT. The party called the referendums to secure a…

Damascus ready to discuss autonomy for Syria Kurds: minister

DAMASCUS: The Syrian government is ready to discuss autonomy for the country's Kurds, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem has said, the first time Damascus has openly accepted such a possibility. Muallem renewed his opposition however to an independence referendum held by Kurds in neighbouring Iraq on Monday. State news agency SANA quoted Walid Muallem telling Russia Today on Monday night that Syria's Kurds "want a form of autonomy within the framework of the borders of the state." "This is negotiable and can be…