Re-af­firm­ing sup­port

Southasia - - Briefing -

Pak­istan and the UK re­cently re­con­firmed their com­mit­ment to work to­gether on global se­cu­rity and tackle the is­sue of ter­ror­ism and ex­trem­ism in South Asia. Dur­ing a bi­lat­eral con­sul­ta­tion, In­te­rior Min­is­ter Rehman Ma­lik met with UK Home Sec­re­tary Theresa May, where the two dis­cussed diplo­matic ef­forts and counter-ter­ror­ism poli­cies in ef­forts to sus­tain a broad-based strate­gic part­ner­ship. At the meet­ing, Sec­re­tary May reaf­firmed UK’S sup­port for Pak­istan’s mil­i­tary and its strong in­sti­tu­tions.

The En­hanced Di­a­logue pro­gram launched by UK Prime Min­is­ter, David Cameron, dur­ing his visit in April ear­lier this year, high­lighted the UK’S com­mit­ment to Pak­istan and its in­creased in­ter­est in the sta­bil­ity of the Af-pak re­gion. The on­go­ing di­a­logue aims to en­hance un­der­stand­ing, con­fi­dence and re­spect be­tween not only the gov­ern­ments of the two sov­er­eign na­tions but also be­tween the peo­ple of both coun­tries.

Apart from dis­cussing the strate­gic re­la­tion­ship, the re­cent meet­ing aimed to draw at­ten­tion to mu­tual spheres of in­flu­ence and in­ter­est that in­cluded trade, cul­tural co­op­er­a­tion, en­ergy and power, eco­nomic sta­bil­ity and ed­u­ca­tional ini­tia­tives.

Ma­lik and May also spoke in depth about peo­ple-topeo­ple in­ter­ac­tion and Pak­istan’s In­te­rior Min­is­ter asked for UK’S co­op­er­a­tion in other sec­tors such as the re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion and sup­port for vic­tims of ter­ror­ism and do­mes­tic abuse. The two sides also es­tab­lished a Mi­gra­tion Joint Work­ing Group that will bring ex­perts from both sides to mon­i­tor and dis­cuss is­sues re­lated to mi­gra­tion in­clud­ing visa is­sues, il­le­gal hu­man traf­fick­ing, bor­der con­trols and broad mi­gra­tion poli­cies, amongst other things. The UK will also as­sist Pak­istan in meet­ing the re­quire­ments of the EU avi­a­tion se­cu­rity reg­u­la­tions.

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