ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan and his British counterpart Amber Rudd held talks on Tuesday, which officials described as constructive and meaningful. Rudd said “I would like to pay tribute to the hard work of the minister as well as Pakistan’s police and its armed forces in delivering significant improvements in security across the country over the last two years.”. Rudd said Pakistan and the UK had worked together to tackle the challenges in terrorism, extremism and organised crime but there is “more that remains to be done.” “Pakistan has suffered more than most from the scourge of terrorism,” Rudd said, adding that during constructive discussion with interior minister it had been agreed that both the countries would work together to enhance their relationship in several areas. Khan said the two countries discussed sharing of intelligence. She announced that the special envoy to the British prime minister on counter-terrorism will be visiting Pakistan shortly to “expand cooperation [between the two countries] structured around Pakistan’s own National Action Plan.” Khan acknowledged that there are few sticking issues and roadblocks, and said they agreed to address them within the limitations of their authority and respective systems. To a question over the presence of MQM founder in London, the foreign secretary said she could understand concerns of Pakistan over the issue, but the matter was being dealt by the police and the Crown Prosecution Service, and she had faith in them.
Rudd said the United Kingdom has unique ties with Pakistan as two per cent of its population traces their roots back to Pakistan. Speaking in regard to aviation and border security, Rudd said Islamabad’s new airport will play important role in the safe and secure movement of people between Pakistan and the UK. “I am pleased we are supporting the airport’s development with training and expertise,” she added. “I am also pleased we are working together to tackle organised immigration crime.” “We want to ensure our borders remain secure for the many legitimate travellers that move between the two countries each year,” she added. Nisar added that during the talks between the two leaders, they decided to hold ministerial meetings on annual basis to discuss matters ranging from security, counter-terrorism, narcotics, immigration and organised crime. “Pakistan has consistently and historically had a very good relation with the UK,” the minister said. The minister said that he did not recall the two countries having any serious problems; only a “few roadblocks” that the countries would address within “limitations imposed by our systems and laws”. Replying to questions the British Home Secretary said it would be her endeavour that the country’s justice system is applies to everyone equally with no exception. “Britain is committed to work closely with Pakistan to facilitate application of justice in all cases. There is absolutely no tolerance in UK for illegal activities for people who think they can evade the law,” she said.