Pakistan will go to the polls on Wednesday to elect a new prime minister in what will be the country's second ever civilian-to-civilian transfer of power.
Why it matters: Pakistan is a nuclear power with volatile relationships with the U.S. and its neighbors, India and Afghanistan. An election that could have been a democratic breakthrough has been fraught by violence and military meddling. Things could still get worse. “We could be heading for a period of prolonged instability if you have a hung parliament,” says Ashley Tellis, a former State Department official now at the Carnegie Endowment.