ISLAMABAD (AP) — Officials in Pakistan say the country's powerful army chief has asked the government to hold negotiations with protesters to settle a mass demonstration outside parliament.
They say Gen. Rasheel Sharif made the request during a meeting Wednesday with Shahbaz Sharif, the younger brother of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. The protesters have demanded the premier step down over allegations of fraud in last year's election.
The two security officials and a government official spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to journalists.
Tensions have been running high in Islamabad, where two anti-government protests have converged with thousands of people now outside of parliament.