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US envoy lauds Pakistani dictator's "democratic vision"
Monday, November 19, 2007 :US Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte ended a three-day visit to Pakistan, which has been under de facto martial law for the past two weeks, with a press conference Sunday at which he reiterated the Bush administration’s strong support for General Pervez Musharraf and his military regime.
“We value our partnership with the government of Pakistan under the leadership of President Musharraf,” declared Negroponte, the number two man in the US State Department.
In a flagrant display of the Bush administration’s hostility and contempt for the most elementary democratic rights of the Pakistani people, Negroponte prefaced this endorsement with high praise for the dictator’s “vision for a moderate, prosperous and democratic Pakistan.”
“Under his [Musharraf’s] leadership,” affirmed Negroponte, “Pakistan has made great progress toward that vision. Over the past few years, the Pakistani people have witnessed expanded and freer media, unprecedented economic growth and development, and the moderation of gender-based laws and school curricula. President Musharraf has been and continues to be a strong voice against extremism.”
Last week the US media and the Western press as a whole made much of Negroponte’s impending visit to Islamabad, claiming that he was going to read the riot act to Musharraf—who, since declaring a state of emergency November 3, has jailed thousands, purged the judiciary, suspended the rights to free speech, free assembly and free movement, and empowered military courts to try government opponents.Read More