President Gen. Pervez Musharraf said in an address to the nation late Saturday that Pakistan was at a "dangerous" juncture, and that Islamic extremists were threatening the authority of the government.

The military ruler, speaking on state-run Pakistan TV hours after he imposed emergency rule, said he hoped democracy would be restored following parliamentary elections.

"But, in my eyes, I say with sorrow that some elements are creating hurdles in the way of democracy," said Musharraf, who was wearing civilian clothes and spoke firmly and calmly. "I think this chaos is being created for personnel interests and to harm Pakistan."