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Theresa May reiterates commitment to tackle joint threats

September 24, 2013

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British Home Secretary Theresa May (L) and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar (R) speak to the media in a meeting in Islamabad on September 24, 2013. – AFP Photo
British Home Secretary Theresa May (L) and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar (R) speak to the media in a meeting in Islamabad on September 24, 2013. – AFP Photo

ISLAMABAD: British Home Secretary Theresa May on Tuesday met Pakistan Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar, Pakistan Secretary for Narcotics Control, Nawabzada Muhammad Akbar Khan Hoti, and other senior officials to discuss bilateral co-operation in tackling shared threats.

According to British High Commission, the home secretary and Interior Minister Nisar restated their commitment to cooperate on issues of pressing mutual importance, including counterterrorism and combating illegal migration and organised crime.

The British diplomat briefed the interior minister on forthcoming launch of the new National Crime Agency, a powerful crime-fighting body which will transform the UK's response to the threat of serious and organised crime.

“This is my third visit to Pakistan as Home Secretary. Each time I visit, it is clear to me that our shared determination to tackle the joint threats we face grows stronger,” she said.

“In the fight against terrorism, Pakistan is on the frontline and has lost more of its citizens to terrorist violence than any other country. The UK stands with the Pakistani people” . We are also united in our determination to confront serious and organised crime, and the gangs who get rich trading in illegal drugs, exploiting people through immigration crime and trafficking the vulnerable into prostitution, said the secretary.

“They cost our economies billions and deprive our citizens of their safety, security and prosperity.”

She said Pakistan has pledged its support as the UK transforms its response to the threat organised criminals pose.

“The launch next month of the National Crime Agency will equip one crime-fighting body with the power and responsibility to find, pursue and bring them to justice wherever they are hiding and then claw back their profits.”

The British home secretary further said Pakistani law enforcement partners will feel the benefits as the NCA’s international network drives cooperation and shares its information and expertise.

“We are united with Pakistan and our support will not waver.”

May stressed that Pakistan's security directly affects the security of the UK and said it is in the interests of both countries to sustain a broad-based strategic relationship founded on respect, trust and mutual benefit.

She welcomed the commitment that Interior Minister Nisar and the government of Pakistan have shown to adopting a zero tolerance approach to illegal migration.

Theresa May also visited the Anti Narcotics Force (ANF) Training Academy and discussed CN matters with the Director General, Major General Iqbal Malik.

Later in the day, the British home secretary also called on President Mamnoon Hussain where matters of UK-Pakistan joint cooperation were discussed.

The Home Secretary was saddened to hear the news of this afternoon's earthquake in Balochistan. She said that her prayers and thoughts were with everyone in the region who has been affected by the disaster.