A corruption probe threatens to undo Pakistan’s prime minister

THE big cardboard boxes that a team of investigators delivered to Pakistan’s Supreme Court on the morning of July 10th were not much to look at. They were held together with two different kinds of duct tape, and bore several labels reading “EVIDENCE” in bright red letters. But their contents—a 275-page report summarising the findings of a two-month corruption probe into the prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, and his family, which the court released that evening—have turned Pakistan’s politics upside-down. The report said that Mr Sharif and his children could not adequately explain their wealth. The opposition promptly called for Mr Sharif and his entire cabinet to resign. Although he did not oblige, and denies any wrongdoing, the scandal may yet bring him down. Even if he survives, his grip on power, along with Pakistan’s recent and hard-won political stability, looks badly shaken.

For 20 years Mr Sharif has denied claims that he used ill-gotten gains from his first term in power,...

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