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Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif met UN Secretary General Mr. Ban Ki Moon in Tajikistan here this evening on the sidelines of the International Conference on the Implementation of the International Decade for Action “Water for Life,” 2005-15.

The Prime Minister told the Secretary General that Pakistan has a strong and steadfast relationship with the UN and the country highly appreciates Mr. Ban Ki Moon’s leadership in advancing the key objectives of peace and development.

He said that support for peacekeeping missions is a strong element of Pakistan’s foreign policy. Pakistan has been among the top contributors to UN’s peacekeeping operations and would continue to respond to calls for peacekeeping, he said.

Talking about Pakistan’s counter terrorism measures, the Prime Minister said the country has formulated a 20-point National Action Plan, adopting a policy of zero tolerance and unflinching dedication towards countering this menace.

The Prime Minister reiterated to the Secretary General that the overriding foreign policy priority of his government is the establishment of a peaceful neighborhood, which is vital for the wellbeing and prosperity of the entire region. To this end, he has reached out to all of Pakistan’s neighbors, including India and Afghanistan.

He recalled his high-level meetings with the Afghan President, Mr. Ashraf Ghani and said that their close cooperation, as well as at other levels of Pakistan government with their Afghan counterparts has contributed to trust and confidence between the two states. The two countries are also closely cooperating on special measures to strengthen their bilateral ties in various spheres including economy, trade and counter terrorism, he added.

As regards India, the Prime Minister said that there appeared to be no acknowledgement of the initiatives he had taken to promote a dialogue process with that country. In fact recent statements by the Indian leadership had been deeply disappointing, he said.

The Prime Minister urged the UN Secretary General to play a proactive role in promoting peace and normalization in the region. He stressed that it is incumbent on the UN Security Council to ensure early implementation of it’s commitment as reflected in the Security Council’s resolutions on Jammu and Kashmir.

Mr. Ban Ki Moon recalled his visit to Islamabad and spoke of his great admiration for the Prime Minister’s bold and far sighted policies.

Federal Minister for Water and Power, Khawaja Muhammad Asif and Special Assistant to PM, Mr. Tariq Fatemi were also present in the meeting.

June 11, 2015

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