Saturday, November 24, 2012

Trio joins heads to plan Muharram security

ISLAMABAD: The top leadership of the country on Friday discussed overall situation in the country with special reference to the security arrangements during the holy month of Muharram. Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf and Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani called on President Asif Ali Zardari at the Presidency. Overall national security situation was discussed in the meeting and the three agreed to accelerate efforts to maintain peace in the country.

The president felicitated the prime minister on holding of the Eighth D8 Summit in Islamabad which, he said, would not only promote the image of the country but would also prove instrumental in further strengthening the bonds among the member countries and forging close cooperation in meeting the common challenges confronted by the D8 countries.

The president also briefed the prime minister about his bilateral meetings, held on the sidelines of the summit, with his Nigerian counterpart Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, head of Bangladeshi delegation Adviser to the Prime Minister on International Affairs Dr Syed Ali Gowher Rizvi, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Indonesian President Dr Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, Egyptian Vice President Mahmud Mekki and Iranian President Dr Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, besides meeting of leaders of Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Turkey and Pakistan.

General Kayani discussed law and order situation with President Zardari. They also exchanged views on national security issues. Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf assured the president that security forces would be facilitated with every kind of resource for betterment of law and order situation across the country. The premier also urged all the political parties to cooperate with the federal and provincial governments in their efforts to maintain peace and order during Muharram.

He said that anti-state and extremist elements would not be allowed to disturb peace in the country. "The nefarious designs of the anti-state elements to fan sectarian divide would never succeed," he said while talking to Dr Farooq Sattar, MQM Rabita Committee Deputy Convener and Minister for Overseas Pakistanis. Sattar called on the prime minister at the PM's House and discussed overall political situation in the country.

The premier also met Minister of State for Water and Power Tasneem Ahmed Qureshi and Minister of State for Professional and Technical Training Sardar Shah Jahan Yousaf and discussed with them issues related to their respective constituencies. The prime minister said the government is committed to public welfare and every effort has been made during the last four years to provide relief to the people. Both the legislators apprised the prime minister about the development projects under execution in their respective constituencies.

Separately, in a meeting with Raja, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Chaudhry Zaka Ashraf briefed him on the measures taken by the Board to encourage cricket in the country. The prime minister appreciated the efforts made by the PCB chairman for reviving cricket with India and hoped that this would encourage greater people-to-people contacts between the two cricketing nations.

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