Coronavirus cooperation discussed with Malaysia, Singapore

Updated April 09, 2020

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FM briefs Malaysian counterpart on PM's proposal for debt relief; shows interest in Singapore's contact tracing app. — FO/File
FM briefs Malaysian counterpart on PM's proposal for debt relief; shows interest in Singapore's contact tracing app. — FO/File

ISLAMABAD: Conti­nu­ing the diplomatic outreach on Covid-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi phoned his Malaysian and Singa­porean counterparts on Wednesday to emphasise the need for closer cooperation for dealing with the challenges emerging from the outbreak of the disease.

In his conversation with Malaysian Foreign Minister Hishamuddin Hussein, Mr Qureshi briefed him about Prime Minister Imran Khan’s proposal for debt relief and restructuring to enable developing countries to save human lives and support their economies.

Talking about the situation in occupied Kashmir, the foreign minister said the BJP government had amended domicile rules for the region in a bid to change its demography.

In his conversation with Singa­pore Foreign Minister Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, Mr Qureshi expressed Pakistan’s interest in a contact tracing application, ‘Trace Together’, to break the chain of transmission.

The application deve­loped by Singapore government can identify people who have been within two metres of a coronavirus patient for at least 30 minutes, using wireless Bluetooth technology.

Mr Qureshi highlighted PM Khan’s call for debt relief and restructuring to help developing countries create the fiscal space needed to combat the disease, save precious human lives and shore up their economies.

Published in Dawn, April 9th, 2020