Islamabad, 11 January 2022 (TDI): The Foreign Secretary of Pakistan, Sohail Mahmood met with a delegation from European countries at the Foreign Office in Islamabad.

The International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD) had organized a study visit for the European delegation to analyse the existing opportunities for collaboration and cooperation in the realm of migration management.

Pakistani Foreign Secretary highlighted the significance of safe, affordable and legal channels to migration and appreciated the broad working system of ICMPD in raising awareness and furthering capacity building.

He further said that transparent pathways prove to be efficient in curbing irregular migration. Welcoming the engagement between the states of origin and states of destination, Sohail Mahmood underscored that mutual understanding of demands and concerns should be enhanced for further cooperation.

He mentioned the dynamic role of Pakistan in “Budapest Process” to combat the illegal migration and to avoid adventurism in the domain of immigration. He also said that Pakistan aims at facilitating the reintegration of returnee migrants.

Sohail Mahmood exchanged his views with the members of delegation by shedding light on the regional situation, particularly the ongoing episodes of the Afghanistan Saga. He mentioned that Pakistan has attached utmost importance to navigate the plethora of prejudices in Afghanistan and urged the international community to support the Afghans during these trying times.

Adding to it, he mentioned that Pakistan has hosted three million Afghan refugees for over forty years and provided them with basic commodities of life, fulfilling an unwavering commitment to the neighbour country. Sohail Mahmood further highlighted the prospects of peace and stability in Afghanistan that will eventually prevent the migration of Afghan people.

During the meeting, the Foreign Secretary urged the global community to share responsibility in accordance with international principle to support the states which are hosting the refugees and reduce the burden by taking collective measures.

Also, Sohail Mahmood applauded the efforts of ICMPD in the terms of organising the visit for European partners that paved the ways for further interaction of Pakistani stakeholders with European counterparts. He assured that Pakistan will continue to support the mandate of ICMPD to fulfil the national priorities in an efficient manner.

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