Pakistan government set to split
Mr Sharif has staked his name on restoring the judges to their jobs
One of the main parties in Pakistan has announced it is pulling out of the government, just three months after landmark general elections.
Ex-PM Nawaz Sharif says his PML-N is quitting because of differences over the reinstatement of judges sacked by President Pervez Musharraf.
Mr Sharif wants the judges, who became a focus of opposition to Mr Musharraf, to get all their old powers back.
But the biggest party, the PPP, wants limitations on their powers.
Both sides were eager to avoid the appearance of a major rift, but analysts called the pull-out a huge set-back that could lead to growing instability.
The BBC's Barbara Plett in Islamabad says further cracks in the alliance may give a lease of life to pro-Musharraf parties which were defeated in recent elections.