ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani has reiterated Pakistan’s resolve to adopt a multi-pronged strategy to address the issue of terrorism and extremism in all its forms and manifestations. Talking to the visiting Home Secretary of UK Ms. Jacqui Smith, who called on him here on Monday, the Prime Minister said that the new democratic government would incorporate both short as well as long term measures to confront the present challenges as Pakistan itself is a victim of this menace.
In this regard he referred to the martyrdom of the former Prime Minister Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto as a great loss to the nation. The Prime Minister said that terrorism and extremism is a global phenomenon and the world community has to focus on the root causes of terrorism which stems from economic disparity and unresolved political issues.
The government, he said, was working on various initiatives including infrastructure development and provision of education and better health facilities in FATA. He also underlined the need to regulate madrassas through modern education which would enable youth to get jobs and contribute towards economic uplift of the area.
Gilani said that both Pakistan and Britain have traditionally enjoyed friendly relations and underscored the need to further expand these ties in all areas. He said Pakistan desires access to both UK as well as to the EU market to further boost the existing economic and trade relations with UK and other European countries.
The Prime Minister said his government would pursue friendly relations with all its neighbours. Pakistan, he said, desires to see a prosperous Afghanistan because a strong and stable Afghanistan is in the national interest of Pakistan. Regarding relations with India, Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani said that Pakistan wants the resolution of all outstanding issues including the core issue of Kashmir through dialogue.
Ms. Jacqui Smith while appreciating the role of Pakistan in curtailing terrorism and extremism assured that the UK government would provide its full support to the new democratic government. Meanwhile talking to the Australian High Commissioner in Pakistan, Ms. Zorica McCarthy, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani said that Pakistan accords priority to its relations with Australia and called for further enhancement of cooperation in all areas to further boost the bilateral relations.-SANA