picture-1Expressing satisfaction over the state of Pak-UK bilateral relations, Interior
Minister Ch. Nisar Ali Khan underscored the need for taking the bilateral
relationship a notch higher by enhancing mutual cooperation in all possible
areas in order to further tap the existing potential for cooperation between the
two countries. This he said while talking to his British counterpart Ms. Theresa
May here in London today. The two leaders discussed a host of issues ranging
from cooperation in counter-terrorism, illegal immigration, organized crimes,
counter narcotics, money laundering, Dr. Imran Farooq murder case and other
issues of mutual interest. The British Home Secretary underlined the importance
of regular exchange of views on security cooperation and other areas. The
Interior Minister remarked that such high level visits provide momentum to the
efforts aimed at further strengthening bilateral relations and enhancing mutual
cooperation. At the outset, British Home Secretary expressed her condolences
over the loss of precious lives as a result of terrorist attack in Lahore.
Secretary May appreciated Pakistan’s efforts in fight against terrorism and
assured Britain’s support to Pakistan in this regard. Recalling the law & order
situation back in 2013, the Interior Minister said that as a result of
continuous efforts by our armed forces and law enforcement agencies, the
security situation has significantly improved. The government remains fully
committed to denying space to these desperate elements to target innocent
citizens and further their ulterior terrorist agenda. Discussing measures to
further increase cooperation in counter-terrorism, it was agreed that a joint
team comprising of British counter-terrorism experts, NACTA and officials from
Ministry of Interior would be constituted and UK would help in further
strengthening of Joint Intelligence Directorate by sharing of expertise and
knowledge. On the issue of organized crimes, the Interior Minister said that
Pakistan looks towards UK for greater cooperation in dealing with organized
crimes and fighting the menace of drug trafficking in the region. He said that
Lack of agreement or treaty on extradition between the two countries will not in
any way deter Pakistan from cooperating with the U.K. in targeting and rooting
out every form of international crimes. Discussing the issue of illegal
immigration, the Interior Minister while highlighting various measures taken
recently against illegal human trafficking, observed that Pakistan acknowledges
the concerns of European countries regarding illegal migrations and is following
zero-tolerance policy in this regard and considers it an inhuman exploitation of
deprived and poor tiers of the Pakistani society by the human trafficking mafia.
The British Home Secretary appreciated various efforts being made by Government
of Pakistan especially the policy followed vis-à-vis returnees from UK and said
that UK would soon send its team to Pakistan to assist the immigration
authorities in formulating a more effective mechanism to check illegal
migrations from the country. The Minister also took up with his British
counterpart the issue of visas for students, officials and business community of
Pakistan. He said that Pakistanis intending to travel to Britain are facing
extreme difficulties and inordinate delays in the acquisition of visas. The
businessmen of Pakistan are particularly feeling the brunt of this tightening of
visa regime. Ms. Theresa May assured the Interior Minister that Home Department
will work with the Pakistan High Commission in London and the Authorities in
Islamabad in addressing issues related to visas. Ongoing cooperation between the
investigation agencies of the two countries in money laundering cases and Dr.
Imran Farooq murder case also came under discussion. It was agreed that the
investigation agencies from the two countries will visit each other’s country to
carry forward the investigation in an independent and transparent manner and in
picture-2line with the respective laws of the two countries.