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Former cricketer turned politician Imran Khan looks set to claim second place in the Pakistan election after Nawaz Sharif declared victory in a jubilant speech to supporters.
Despite bombings across the country, millions turned out to vote in a historic election that will bring the first transition between civilian governments in a country that has been ruled by the military for more than half of its turbulent history.
Sharif, who looks set to become the country's prime minister for the third time, told supporters: "Results are still coming in, but this much is confirmed: we're the single largest party so far.
"Please pray that by morning we're in a position that we don't need the crutch of coalition partners."
Khan's party Tehrik-i-Insaf (PTI) looks set to come in second place thanks to vast support amongst the country's youth.
The former cricketer has called for an end to corruption and a halt to US drone strikes against suspected militants on Pakistani soil.
Former cricketer Imran Khan has been elected into Parliament in Pakistan’s northwestern city of Peshawar, according to reports.
Ex-prime minister Nawaz Sharif, head of the centre-right Pakistan Muslim League-N, also won his seat, a party spokesman told AFP.
Sharif, who has served as prime minister twice before, was elected to parliament in his Punjab heartland – although voting has been marred by deadly bomb blasts.
Shadow justice secretary Sadiq Khan has praised Pakistan for taking a "massive step forward" despite the violence at today's historic election.
Millions have turned out to vote in Pakistan's landmark election today despite a string of militant attacks and gunfights that have killed at least 15 people.
Many went to polls in the searing heat for a vote that will bring the country's first transition between civilian governments.
At least 11 people were killed in twin bomb blasts in Karachi today, while four died in a gun battle in the restive province of Baluchistan.
Several were injured in an explosion that destroyed a political party office in the insurgency-infected northwest, while there were further casualties in a blast in the city of Peshawar.
The bomb attack on the office of Pakistan's Awami National Party in Karachi has killed 11 people and wounded 35, Reuters has reported.
At least two people were wounded in a pair of blasts that followed the initial explosion, while local media reported gunfire in the city.
This election is historic for two contradictory reasons.
On one hand, it's the first time democracy has worked as intended in Pakistan, with a full-term government handing over to an elected successor.
On the other hand, it's the bloodiest ever election in this country. The leader of the Pakistani Taliban threatened suicide bombs across the country. Today, one bombing in Karachi has claimed at least 10 lives.
No clear winner is expected. The polls suggest the outgoing government coalition will do badly and that the biggest party in the new Parliament will be more anti-Western. Its leader has said it will consider negotiations with the Taliban.
Former cricketer Imran Khan remains in hospital after a fall left him with spinal injuries. His party may well win enough seats to make him a strong coalition partner, or a powerful force in opposition.
Election-related bombings have occurred in several cities in Pakistan as militants look to disrupt the country's historic vote, which marks the first transition between civilian governments.
The bomb blast in the commercial capital Karachi, which has killed 10 people and wounded 30, targeted the office of Awami National Party (ANP) and was followed by another explosion minutes later.
An explosion also destroyed an ANP office in the northwest, though no casualties have been reported. TV channels also reported an explosion in the city of Peshawar.
Pakistan's Taliban, who are close to al Qaeda, have killed over 110 people in election-related violence since April. The ANP and Pakistan People's Party (PPP) led the outgoing coalition.
I understand that at least 10 people have been killed in a bomb blast in a political office in Karachi on election day in Pakistan.
These unverified pictures from Pakistani television appear to show damage from a bomb blast in Karachi, Pakistan.
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His should be a stable government for he will not need any other party bloc to form a coalition; a few independents will do.
Nawaz Sharif appears to have completed an astonishing political comeback in Pakistan's general election.