Here is a chronology of major political events over recent months that led to emergency rule being declared.
* March 9, 2007: Musharraf suspends Supreme Court Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry over allegations of misconduct. Lawyers rally around the top judge and Musharraf's popularity plummets.
* July 10: Musharraf orders troops to storm the Red Mosque in Islamabad to crush a Taliban-style movement there. At least 105 people are killed. Militant attacks and suicide bombings follow.
* July 20: Supreme Court reinstates Chief Justice Chaudhry, dealing a blow to Musharraf's authority.
* July 27: Musharraf meets former prime minister Benazir Bhutto in Abu Dhabi for inconclusive talks on how to move the country towards a civilian-led democracy. Bhutto demands that Musharraf step down as army chief.
* Sept 10: Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif is arrested at Islamabad airport on his arrival from exile, despite the Supreme Court clearing his return. He is deported to Saudi Arabia.
* Oct 2: Musharraf's government announces it will drop graft charges against Bhutto, clearing the way for her return.
* Oct 6: Musharraf wins a presidential vote by legislators. Supreme Court holds off confirming legality of vote.
* Oct 19: Suicide bomber tries to assassinate Bhutto in Karachi as she returns from eight years of exile. Nearly 140 people are killed in one of the country's deadliest attacks.
* Nov 2: Supreme Court reconvenes to decide if Musharraf was eligible to stand for re-election while army chief.
* Nov 3: Musharraf imposes emergency rule, detaining thousands of opposition politicians and lawyers.
* Nov 11: Musharraf says election will be held by Jan. 8.
* Nov 13: Bhutto placed under house arrest for a week in Lahore, hours before planned march against emergency rule. Bhutto says Musharraf must quit as president.
* Nov 14: Sharif says he is ready to work with Bhutto.
* Nov 15: Musharraf appoints Senate chairman Mohammadmian Soomro to head a caretaker line-up to oversee elections.
* Nov 22: Commonwealth suspends Pakistan.
* Nov 25: Sharif returns from exile.
* Nov 28: A tearful Musharraf hands over command of the army to General Ashfaq Kayani.
* Nov 29: Musharraf is sworn in as a civilian leader and sets a date for lifting emergency rule.
* Dec 9: Sharif says he will take part in Jan. 8 election, rather than boycott.
* Dec 15: Musharraf lifted the state of emergency and restored the constitution.