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Bush, Musharraf to talk tough on terrorism, discuss bilateral ties

Written by: Staff

Islamabad, Mar 4: US President George W Bush today (Mar 4, 2006) held an hour long one-on-one meeting with Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf at which the two leaders are understood to have revived the progress in the global fight against terrorism as well as bilateral ties.

They were later joined by their respective delegation.

Earlier, President Bush arrived at the Aiwan-e-Sadr this morning amid heightened security and attended the formal welcoming ceremony, which included a guard of honour by a Pakistani armed forces contingent.

Foreign ministry officials said the talks between the two sides would focus on regional security, Jammu and Kashmir issue, US-Iran stand off due to the latter's nuclear weapons programme, ongoing cooperation in the war against terror and bilateral issues.

Information minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmad told newspersons here, the talks will also focus on Pakistan's energy requirements and cooperation in education, agriculture, investment, trade and science and technology.

''Jammu and Kashmir will be one of the important issues to be discussed during the talks,'' he added.

A state of high alert has already been declared in the capital with over 6,000 military, paramilitary and police contingent patrolling the city and guarding the over ten square km area covering Aiwan-e-Sadr, Parliament house square and the diplomatic enclave, which houses 26 foreign missions including the US embassy.

President Bush arrived here last night from New Delhi where he held talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and reached a civilean nuclear energy cooperation deal.

President Musharraf did not go to the airport to receive Mr Bush who was greeted by foreign minister Khurshid Mehmud Kasuri.

Mr Bush's visit coincides with countrywide protests held yesterday by the religious organistation headed by the Islamist Muttahida Majlis-e-Ammal (MMA), which opposed his tour and announced to observe 'Black Day' today.

On Thursday, a US diplomat along with three others were killed in a car bomb suicide attack in the port city of Karachi.


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