Pakistan House UK hosts reception to honour Qureshi

ISLAMABAD: A reception was hosted at the Pakistan House (High Commissioner’s residence) in honour of Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi, who arrived in the UK earlier Monday on an official visit.

The event was attended by a large number of eminent members of the British Pakistani community, including parliamentarians, academia, business-people and professionals, says a press release received here today from London.

Addressing the gathering, the Foreign Minister lauded the outstanding contribution of the British Pakistani Diaspora in cementing Pakistan-UK relations. He apprised the participants of the steps taken by the government to facilitate Overseas Pakistanis. He appreciated in particular, the buy-in of initiatives such as Roshan Digital Accounts on part of the community.

Foreign Minister apprised the gathering of efforts being made by Pakistan to raise the Kashmir issue and highlight human rights and humanitarian situation in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir at every forum, including the UN General Assembly Session in New York. He re-affirmed Pakistan’s unflinching commitment to stand in solidarity with its Kashmiri brethren till the realization of their inalienable right to self-determination.

The Foreign Minister also briefed community members about Pakistan’s perspective on the evolving situation in Afghanistan, where a new political reality had emerged. Pakistan had extended every possible support for evacuation of foreign and Afghan nationals who wished to leave the country, and also set up a humanitarian corridor. It was imperative that the international community did not repeat past mistakes, stayed engaged, and acted to prevent a humanitarian disaster.

Earlier, welcoming the Foreign Minister, High Commissioner Moazzam Ahmad Khan apprised him of the measures being taken to enhance communication with the community and improve its access to the services offered by the High Commission and its Consulates. He thanked the Foreign Minister for taking personal interest in having the matter of removal of Pakistan from the Red List resolved satisfactorily.

He also recounted that pursuant to the Foreign Minister’s emphasis on economic diplomacy, the Mission had been making concerted efforts to increase and diversify exports, enhance remittances and encourage FDI. This had resulted in a substantial and unprecedented increase in exports and remittances, and an improvement in FDI. During his visit the Foreign Minister is expected to hold in-depth discussions with his British counterpart, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss on the entire gamut of bilateral relations and issues of mutual interest. He is also expected to meet key British parliamentarians.