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Report: U.S. impatient with Musharraf

WASHINGTON, April 2 (UPI) -- There are growing signs the Bush administration is becoming impatient with Pakistani's military president, Pervez Musharraf, USA Today reports.

The latest incident to heighten wariness in Washington was March 9, when Musharraf ordered the country's top judge to step down on allegations of unspecified abuses of authority, the newspaper said.

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Protests, demonstrations and lawyers' boycotts followed and Musharraf said he will outline the case against Iftikhar Chaudhry on Tuesday.

Richard Boucher, assistant U.S. secretary of state for south and central Asian affairs, said the U.S. government "will watch carefully" how Musharraf handles the case, as he has pledged to restore democracy in the country.

Rep. Gary Ackerman, D-N.Y., chairman of the House Foreign Relations subcommittee on the Middle East and South Asia, said there was also concern about Musharraf's decision last year to withdraw the Pakistani army from tribal areas along the Afghan border.

"He's shown no serious interest in getting rid of the terrorists," Ackerman said.

In February, Vice President Dick Cheney made a surprise trip to Islamabad and urged Musharraf to do more to clamp down on Afghan insurgents along the border.

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