Pakistani opposition leader Nawaz Sharif leaves exile in Saudi Arabia

Pakistani opposition leader Nawaz Sharif took off from Saudi Arabia Sunday to return to his homeland where police had sealed off the airport ahead of his arrival, a security official at the Saudi airport said. Sharif flew with a larger contingent of family members but no Saudis, the official added on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak with the press. Sharif last tried to return to Pakistan in September after eight years of exile in Saudi Arabia following his overthrow by Gen. Pervez Musharraf, but police in Islamabad swiftly booted him back. Musharraf visited Saudi Arabia earlier this week to convince the king that the return of Sharif should wait until after elections scheduled for January, according to Pakistani officials.