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Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Ms. Hina Rabbani Khar chaired a meeting of the Friends of Democratic Pakistan (FoDP) today. Islamabad-based representatives of FoDP countries/organisations attended the meeting.

Reviewing the progress made by the FoDP process on various programmes and projects since its inception in 2008, the Minister of State appreciated the support extended by FoDP partners. The Minister of State, noted with appreciation that the FoDP was engaged in specific projects which were critical for Pakistan’s long-term socio-economic development. In this regard, the Minister of State commended the Energy Report and Plan prepared by the FoDP which provided for a five-year plan of action to address energy challenges in Pakistan.

Minister of State also acknowledged the contributions and assistance of FoDP members following the law enforcement operation in Malakand and during the floods last year. In this regard, the establishment of a Multi Donor Trust Fund at the World Bank was significant as it was financing a range of development projects in Khyber Pakhtukhwa, FATA and Balochistan.

Ms. Khar stressed the need to judge the performance of the FoDP through the work it had so far accomplished. She stated that the democratic Government of Pakistan was pursuing the reform agenda in earnestness, and was determined to continue taking difficult steps in the long-term interests of Pakistan, adding that it was important for the international community, especially for our Friends, to show understanding of the issues being faced by Pakistan. She emphasised that the people of Pakistan were rendering enormous sacrifices for global stability.

Several FoDP representatives in their remarks appreciated Pakistan’s contributions and sacrifices in counterterrorism and reiterated their full support to Pakistan. They also flagged the importance of sustaining the FoDP momentum in accordance with Pakistan’s national priorities.

It was announced that an FoDP Workshop on Institution Capacity Building would be held in Ankara on 8-9 September 2011. The Minister of State thanked the Government of Turkey for hosting the Workshop.

14 July 2011

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