LONDON: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani Thursday said Pakistan and the United Kingdom were fighting together their common enemy of extremism and terrorism and would further enhance cooperation on this vital area.
Speaking to British Home Secretary Theresa May here at his hotel, the prime minister said the two countries were also cooperating to help eliminate the threat of the Improvised Explosive Devices. Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar and Interior Minister Rehman Malik were also present at the meeting.
Malik confirmed that talks between the two countries were a regular feature on the issue of IEDs.
The British home secretary later told APP that she had very “useful discussions” with Prime Minister Gilani, Foreign Minister Khar and the Interior Minister Malik.
She said the two countries had a strong relationship and could work together in countering extremism and terrorism.
During the talks, the Pakistani side also raised the issue of visas, particularly for students, and was informed that the visa procedure had been improved and urgent visas could also now be obtained. However, the Pakistani side said that despite improvements in some areas, there was still considerable delay and that students were facing problems that needed to be rectified.
Moreover, Home Secretary May recalled her recent visit to Pakistan where she met officials of the Nadra and Narcotics Control and appreciated their work. She was also appreciative of the Pakistani diaspora which she said was playing an important role in the British economy.
She said a number of British Pakistanis were also members of the UK parliament and were helping build bridges between the governments and the people of the two countries.
Prime Minister Gilani said the two countries had deep and lasting ties that have continued to grow.