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Pakistan regard IS group as a terrorist organisation: Nawaz Sharif

29 November, 2015

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BIRGU: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said on Friday that Pakistan regarded the militant Islamic State (IS) group as a terrorist organisation and supports international efforts to counter the threats posed by it.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and other world leaders attended two retreat sessions on the second day of Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) that focused on violent extremism, Sustainable Development Goals and migration. The sessions held at the 14th century Saint Angelo Fort situated in Malta’s historic city of Birgu, also known as Vittoriosa, gathered the world leaders to delve upon finding working solutions to the issues that were impacting the Commonwealth countries.

The sessions were joined by heads of government, including Malta’s Joseph Muscat, Britain’s David Cameron, Canada’s Justin Trudeau, Australia’s Malcolm Turnbull, French President Francois Hollande, Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena and other representatives from 53 member states. The retreat sessions provided the CHOGM leaders an opportunity to mingle with each other, and have their say in bilateral exchanges away from the public platform. Besides exchange of pleasantries, the heads of government did not miss the opportunity to share with each other their opinions on current global security challenges and the suite of domestic, regional and international policy responses required to counter extremism.

In an informal interaction with other heads of government, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif conveyed Pakistan’s strong condemnation of terrorist activities whether committed by individuals, groups or states resulting in violence or threat of violence. He apprised other leaders that Pakistan was also cooperating with the international community to deal with militancy and fully implemented the UN Security Council sanction regimes against terrorism.

The CHOGM leaders shared views on promoting global partnerships between the Commonwealth and other like-minded organisations pursuing similar agendas and stressed upon the states to invest in preventive measures to protect their citizens from threat of violence extremism. During the second retreat session held with the agenda of implementation of SDGs and migration, the prime minister informed other leaders that Pakistan was facing the issue of migrants and refugees from over 35 years. He stressed that Commonwealth must advocate long-term view of migration with more opportunities for regular and legal migration.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif also exchanged views on the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development with particular attention to the steps that might be taken by the Commonwealth governments to accelerate implementation. Nawaz also had a conversation with British Prime Minister David Cameron and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at the retreat sessions. Prime Minister Nawaz and his Australian counterpart, Malcolm Turnbull met on Saturday and discussed ways to strengthen bilateral cooperation in diverse fields.

The two leaders who met during the retreat session of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting expressed satisfaction over the existing cooperation between the two countries in the fields of trade, investment and defence. Prime Minister Nawaz said Pakistan values its relations with Australia, adding that the present state of relations are cordial based on mutual trust. He apprised the Australian prime minister about Pakistan’s efforts for maintaining peace in the region and mentioned the sacrifices made by Pakistani nation in this regard.

The two sides also discussed the areas for joint cooperation, including education and research, civil services reform and governance, and energy sector. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Prime Minister Turnbull also exchanged views on their shared interests in combating terrorism and extremist violence.

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