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Friday, 15 September, 2000, 13:34 GMT 14:34 UK
Musharraf criticises Bangladesh premier
Kofi Annan with General Pervez Musharraf
General Musharraf has just returned from the UN Summit
Pakistan's military ruler, General Pervez Musharraf, has criticised Bangladesh after comments made by the country's prime minister, Sheikh Hasina.

On Thursday, Sheikh Hasina called for the trial of Pakistanis allegedly involved in war crimes against Bangladesh in the 1971 independence war.

I was polite but she was hostile

General Musharraf on Sheikh Hasina
General Musharraf said Bangladesh should forget the past and look forward.

The general had just returned from the United Nations Millennium Summit in New York, where he cancelled a meeting with Sheikh Hasina apparently in reaction to her criticism of military regimes.

He told a news conference in Pakistan that some of the Bangladeshi leader's statements at the UN were a direct interference in Pakistani matters.

"There was no point in meeting her in such an atmosphere," General Musharraf said.

"I was polite but she was hostile, when we were sitting on one table during a function at the UN," he added.

Strong words

In her address to the UN General Assembly, Sheikh Hasina called for action against those regimes which overthrew democratically elected governments - although she did not mention Pakistan by name.

Sheikh Hasina
Sheikh Hasina: Tough talk at the UN
On her return to Dhaka, she expressed surprise that her remarks may have offended General Musharraf and said she had spoken of deeply-held convictions.

But she also raised the issue of Pakistanis allegedly involved in war crimes during the 1971 war which led to the break up of Pakistan and Bangladesh's emergence as as independent state.

The BBC's Islamabad correspondent, Susannah Price, say the war has again become a controversial issue following the publication of an official Pakistani report.

The report, by the Hamoodur Rahman Commission, was published by the Indian magazine, India Today, and heavily criticised several top ranking army personnel, calling for them to be court martialled.

The report has never been made public in Pakistan.

Dhaka says at least three million Bengalis were killed in that war.

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See also:

12 Sep 00 | South Asia
Hasina surprised by Musharraf 'snub'
30 Aug 00 | South Asia
Bangladesh requests war report
31 Jul 00 | South Asia
Pakistan after the coup: Special report
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