TIPTON, Iowa -- Democrat John Edwards Friday detailed more of his conversation with Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf hours after the assassination of opposition leader Benazir Bhutto.
Speaking to about 60 people in a downtown restaurant, Edwards said he called Pakistan's ambassador to the United States shortly after hearing about Bhutto's death. A couple hours later, he said, he got a call from Musharraf, whom he had met several years ago during a visit to Islamabad.
"What I said to him was, number one, this democratization has got to continue," Edwards said he told the president. He also told him to let international investigators in to probe the killing.
Edwards said the U.S. should encourage Pakistani elections, which may be delayed because of Bhutto's assassination. He said America should re-evaluate its aid. News reports have said much of the aid has been spent not to fight extremists but to arm Pakistan for any potential war with its Indian neighbor.
And Edwards found room to criticize President Bush.
"Unlike President Bush, America should not be engaged with Pakistan unilaterally," he said. "This needs to be a multi-lateral approach."