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Pakistan's top court allows Nawaz Sharif to run for political office

  • Story Highlights
  • Sharif, a former prime minister, is leader of the Pakistan Muslim League-N party
  • Supporters protested Supreme Court's decision barring him from public office
  • Court had also stripped Sharif's brother, Shahbaz, of post as chief minister of Punjab
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ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (CNN) -- Pakistan's Supreme Court overturned its ban on opposition leader Nawaz Sharif and his brother, allowing both men to run for political office, a court representative told CNN Tuesday.

Sharif, a former prime minister, is the leader of the Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) political party. His supporters had protested the Supreme Court's decision earlier this year barring Sharif from holding public office, citing a criminal record that dates to the late 1990s.

The court had also stripped Sharif's brother, Shahbaz, of his post as chief minister of Punjab -- Pakistan's largest and most populous province, where Sharif's PML-N has its center of power.

After several days of widespread protests, President Asif Ali Zardari bowed to their demands in March and announced his government would review the court ruling.

He also said he would reinstate the judges sacked by Pakistan's previous president -- another demand of the protesters.

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