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****  PRESS RELEASE  ****

 - For Immediate Release & Distribution  -


PAKISTANI PRESIDENT URGED TO ADVOCATE JUST RESOLUTION TO MIDDLE EAST CONFLICT


September 16, 2005

American-Muslims ask for meeting to discuss war on terror and impasse in Mideast peace

(WASHINGTON, D. C. 9/16/05) The American Muslim Taskforce on Civil Rights and Elections (AMT), a national coalition of major American-Muslim organizations, today cautioned Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Musharraf to not allow his address to the American Jewish Congress be misconstrued as an endorsement of the state of Israel's conduct towards occupied Palestinians.

American Muslims have a number of issues to discuss with Musharraf, including a just resolution to conflicts in the Middle East and Kashmir, the rights of the Palestinian people in any future peace settlement and the role of Muslim nations in the war on terrorism.

"Because rapidly changing global conditions necessitate a new consensus among Muslims, a meeting with American Islamic leaders would offer an excellent opportunity for an exchange of views," said AMT Chair Dr. Agha Saeed.

The AMT statement reads:

"We believe that President Musharraf's address to the American Jewish Congress presents an important opportunity to highlight how continued occupation of Palestine by Israel constitutes a central cause of conflict between the Muslim world and the West.

"We ardently support the position of the Pakistani government that formal diplomatic relations with Israel "will have to wait" until a just peace is obtained and an "independent Palestinian state" has come into existence.

"Any relations with Israel should be contingent on two factors: 1) full implementation of all relevant UN resolutions, particularly 194, 242, and 338, and return of Syrian, Lebanese and Palestinian lands currently occupied by Israel, and 2) establishment of a viable, independent and sovereign state of Palestine.

"Any mediation on behalf of the Palestinians must be done with the foreknowledge and approval of their democratically-elected leadership."

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AMT members and affiliates endorsing this statement include: American Muslim Alliance (AMA), Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), Muslim Alliance in North America (MANA), Muslim American Society (MAS), Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), Muslim Student Association-National (MSA-N), Muslim Ummah of North America (MUNA), Project Islamic Hope (PIH), and United Muslims of America (UMA).