Pakistan eyes on ASEAN’s full dialogue partnership


KUALA LUMPUR – Adviser on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz on Friday emphasised Pakistan’s keen desire to build deeper trade and economic linkages with the South East Asian countries and the ASEAN – the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.


During the 22nd ministerial meeting of the ASEAN Regional Forum in Malaysian capital, the adviser requested all ASEAN members to support Pakistan’s case for full dialogue partnership. On the sidelines of the ministerial meeting, the adviser held bilateral meetings with the Foreign Affairs ministers of China, Turkey, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, North Korea and Norway.


During the meetings, he held wide-ranging discussions including issues of peace and security in the Asia Pacific region and ways and means to tackle traditional and non-traditional security challenges. He also appreciated the vital role of the ASEAN Forum in evolving regional security architecture.


The adviser expressed serious concern on unprecedented rise in the number of migrants leaving their countries in a bid to escape persecution and economic deprivation at home. He said that the exodus caused hundreds of deaths on rickety boats in the Mediterranean and the Indian ocean without discounting motives of human smugglers in escalating the crisis.


He urged the world community not to shy away from its responsibility in ensuring that minorities and refugees were treated not only justly and fairly, but generously.


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