Pakistan is opposed to UNSC expansion, says Musharraf
* Schroeder satisfied with Pakistan’s stance on nuclear proliferation
ISLAMABAD: President Pervez Musharraf said on Sunday that Pakistan would not contribute to expanding the UN Security Council. “We feel that increasing the number of permanent members of the UN Security Council is against the democratic considerations of the sovereign equality of nations,” he told a joint press conference after talks with German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder.
He said Germany understood Pakistan’s principled stance on the issue. The two leaders met exclusively for 30 minutes before formal talks and agreed to increase bilateral political and economic relations.
Chancellor Schroeder praised Pakistan’s effort in the anti-terror war and favoured President Musharraf’s strategy to address the causes of conflict through dialogue.
President Musharraf briefed the chancellor about Pakistan-India dialogue for the resolution of all outstanding disputes including Kashmir. The president told the German leader that Pakistan was for addressing the core disputes which led to terrorism in addition to acting against terrorists.
The president said Osama was alive and hiding somewhere, but nothing could be said about his whereabouts. He said Osama was on the move so nobody could give an exact timeframe to track him down.
Mr Schroeder said he was satisfied that Pakistan had a clear stand against nuclear non-proliferation. “I am very satisfied that President Musharraf has an absolutely clear and unequivocal stance against nuclear proliferation”.
He said the world should reject the ‘clash of civilisations’ and try to address the disputes through dialogue. “We should not allow an iron curtain between Islam and the West,” Mr Schroeder said, adding that Islam as a religion should not be targeted. He said not only the European Union, but the entire world should work for peace.
The German leader said the Afghan elections would steer the country to peace and stability.
Earlier, Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz and Mr Schroeder discussed international and bilateral issues and addressed a joint press conference. Mr Schroeder said Germany would help Pakistan in its cooperation with the EU to achieve a level-playing field. The two countries signed a $22 million agreement for the development of a Pakistani hydropower project. app