Islamabad: Sir Peter Ricketts, UK National Security Adviser called on President Asif Ali Zardari at the Aiwan-e-Sadr tonight. He was accompanied with Mr. Mark Sedwill, UK Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan and Mr. Adam Thomson, UK high Commissioner in Pakistan.
From Pakistan side those who attended the meeting included Chaudhry Ahmad Mukhtar, Ms. Hina Rabbani Khar, and Spokesperson to the President Mr. Farhatullah Babar.
Briefing the media about the meeting, Spokesperson to the President Mr. Farhatullah Babar said that matters relating to Pak-UK bilateral relations with focus on enhanced strategic dialogue, regional security situation, emerging situation in Afghanistan and the fight against militancy were discussed during the meeting.
The President urged the need for further enhancing strategic and co-operative ties between the two countries based on shared interests and mutual respect. He said that Britain and Pakistan needed to work closely to further enhance their partnership in diverse areas with a view to eliminate militancy and terrorism and promote peace and security of the region and the world.
The President said that we believe that National Security Dialogue with UK, comprising of political, military and intelligence tracks would lead to creating a better understanding in bringing about clarity on issues of global, regional peace and security.
Discussing Afghanistan situation, the President said that Pakistan, due to its geo-strategic location was a major stakeholder and regional player in promoting regional stability and peace. He said that Pakistan has abiding interest in the peaceful, stable, secure and prosperous Afghanistan and will continue to support every effort of international community in this regard.
He said that and any development in Afghanistan was directly impacting Pakistan adding that Pakistan supports Afghan-led and Afghan owned reconciliation and peace process in Afghanistan.
The Spokesperson said that the President while commenting on fight against militancy said that no country has made greater contributions and sacrifices in fighting terrorism than Pakistan and added that the international community owed it to Pakistan and the region to acknowledge it and support Pakistan in its efforts.
Discussing regional issues, the President said that Pakistan stands for peace in the region and the world and we want to have friendly, cooperative and good neighbourly relations with India. In this context the President also referred to the recent positive developments during high level interactions between the two neighbourly countries.
Sir Peter Ricketts, UK National Security Adviser appreciated the huge sacrifices rendered by the law enforcing agencies and the people of Pakistan in fighting extremism and assured continued support of the British government in curbing militancy and revival of war and flood ravaged economy.
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