John Howard rings Musharraf, asks him to observe restraint

November 14th, 2007 - 8:28 am ICT by admin  
“As it happens, I had a telephone conversation with President Musharraf last night (Sunday night) and I took the opportunity of conveying my feelings,” Howard said.

Musharraf tried to justify the imposition of emergency in Pakistan by saying to Howard that the step had to be taken to rein in the judiciary, which interfered in his government’s resolve to stop Islamic suicide bombers creating mayhem across the country.

“I indicated to him that whilst I retain considerable respect and admiration for the strong stance he has taken against terrorism, that Australia could not support in any way any extra-constitutional behaviour,” the quoted Howard, as saying.

“That the rule of law had to prevail. And that I hoped there would be an early return to a more democratic past,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Labor party said that Australian troops deployed in Afghanistan could be at greater risk in the wake of the deteriorating political situation in Pakistan.

“It will be difficult to get on top of the security situation in Afghanistan without Pakistan’s co-operation in controlling the movement of Taliban and al-Qaeda terrorists across its border,” Opposition Foreign Affairs spokesman Robert McClelland said. (ANI)

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