ISLAMABAD - Palestinian President Mahmood Abbas thanked the people and Government of Pakistan for their consistent and unflinching support on the Palestinian cause.
He conveyed these sentiments during a call by the Advisor to the Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs on the sidelines of the 20th session of OIC's Al Quds Committee being held in Marrakech.
Sartaj Aziz informed President Abbas of assistance offered by Pakistan to the Palestinian people through ongoing capacity building programmes and activities in wide ranging areas including education and training in medical, engineering, diplomacy and other disciplines.
He reiterated the time tested, vocal and sustained support extended by Pakistan towards full realisation of the right to self-determination of the people of Palestine in accordance with the relevant UN and OIC resolutions.
He said the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is whole heartedly committed to assisting the Palestinian brethren in the establishment of an independent state with Al Quds al Sharif as its capital.
The Advisor welcomed the recent resumption of the stalled peace process under the US auspices expressing the hope that it would address all issues in accordance with the two-state solution envisaged in the Arab peace initiative. Both sides agreed to continue to strengthen institutional linkages through optimal utilization of the existing cooperation as well identification of new avenues to further cooperation.
PAKISTAN, MOROCCO AGREE
TO BOOST TRADE
Pakistan and Morocco on Sunday agreed to give priority to boosting trade and commercial cooperation by finalising Preferential Trade Agreement between the two countries at an early date. This was agreed in a meeting between Advisor to Prime Minister Sartaj Aziz and Foreign Minister of Morocco Salahuddin Mizwar which was held on the sidelines of the 20th Session of OIC's Alquds Committee convened in this ancient Moroccan town. The two sides decided to call the second session of their Joint Ministerial Commission in April in Pakistan for which the Moroccan Foreign Minister will visit Pakistan.
Pak-Morocco Joint Business Council will also be revived. Aziz said that a forward move in negotiations for a Pak-Morocco PTA, stalled since 2008, was imperative if the bilateral trade was to be enhanced which at present was in Morocco's favour.
The two sides also agreed to facilitate issue of business visas and increase exchange of business delegations to improve their commercial cooperation in addition to exploring extra means of doing this.
Mizwar said that Morocco was a completely open market and would welcome increased business cooperation particularly with the brotherly Islamic nation of Pakistan.
Both sides held that the closeness and goodwill that existed in political field must be reflected in economic and commercial cooperation. Aziz said that the people of Pakistan look forward to welcome King Mohammad VI, under whom the Kingdom has made enviable progress in all fields.
Frequency of bilateral visits on other levels should also be increased. Mizwar lauded Pakistan's active participation in the Alquds Committee meeting.
He said that Pakistan has always played a proactive role in the Palestinian cause and resolving other issues facing the Muslim Ummah.