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Last Updated: Wednesday, 22 September, 2004, 17:16 GMT 18:16 UK
Musharraf warns of 'iron curtain'
Musharraf and Bush
Musharraf (left) and Bush: Allies against terror
Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf has said there is "no time to lose" to prevent an iron curtain falling between the West and Muslim nations.

President Musharraf told the UN General Assembly in New York international disputes had to be solved to give Islamic nations justice.

He also said Pakistan was committed to solving its Kashmir dispute with India.

He said he would tell India's premier in talks on Friday: "This is the moment for peace. We must not let it slip."

'Tragedy of Palestine'

President Musharraf said there was global co-operation to tackling terrorism - a threat he called "very close and very personal" - he was the target of two assassination attempts last December.

However he said what the world was doing was insufficient.

I think we are the main contributors to the campaign against terror
President Pervez Musharraf

The president said the causes of terrorism had to be tackled, pointing to international disputes such as the "tragedy of Palestine".

"Action has to be taken before an iron curtain finally descends between the West and the Islamic world," he said.

"The major powers of the West have yet to show movement by seriously trying to resolve internationally recognised disputes affecting the Muslim world."

On Kashmir, the president praised the dialogue with India and said he looked forward to meeting Indian premier Manmohan Singh on Friday.

"Neither country can achieve ambitions for social and economic progress without peace," President Musharraf said.

He also promised Afghanistan that Pakistan would do all it could to prevent militants from using Pakistani territory to disrupt Afghan elections on 9 October.

Nuclear secrets

The president earlier met his US counterpart, George W Bush.

Pakistani troops in Wana
Pakistan has sent thousands of troops after militants
The men met for about an hour, focusing on security, in particular efforts to curb al-Qaeda fighters.

They also discussed how to eliminate the remnants of the network of Abdul Qadeer Khan, the scientist who illegally sold nuclear secrets to third countries, a US official said.

Mr Bush also touched on moving forward Pakistan's democratic institutions, the official said.

President Musharraf, a key ally in the US-led war on terror, earlier defended his government's record in the anti-terrorism campaign in a BBC interview.

"I think we are the main contributors to the campaign against terror.

"I really am terribly disappointed when anybody uses the words 'not doing enough'.

"Who else is doing anything? It is only Pakistan which is doing something."

In March, Pakistan launched a large-scale offensive in the South Waziristan region, bordering Afghanistan, against al-Qaeda fighters and tribesmen supporting them.

Further operations have since been carried out against the hundreds of al-Qaeda linked fighters Islamabad says are in the area.

Enlightened moderation

President Musharraf's meeting with the Indian premier will be the first between the two since Mr Singh's Congress-led coalition government took office in May.

Manmohan Singh and Tony Blair
Musharraf and Singh will meet for the first time

President Musharraf told the BBC he hoped to develop a good relationship with Mr Singh.

"This is going to be an important meeting. I am going with a very open mind," the president said.

"This first meeting is meant to develop relationships, understandings because I think that is very important as a prerequisite to looking for solutions."

Mr Singh has promised to engage constructively with Pakistan over Kashmir, provided the threat caused by Kashmiri separatists could be kept under control.

India accuses Pakistan of sponsoring an Islamic uprising in its part of Kashmir. Pakistan says it only lends diplomatic backing to an indigenous insurgency against Indian rule.

President Musharraf has spent his time in the United States so far promoting his theme of enlightened moderation in the Muslim world.

He again mentioned it in his General Assembly speech.

He has said he is trying to move Pakistan away from a "culture" of extremism.

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