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Forum in Turkey seeks to boost aid to Pakistan

 US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke, left, Foreign Minister Sheik Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Ara...
 US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke, left, Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Ar...

Turkey Pakistan

US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke, left, Foreign Minister Sheik Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Ara...

Turkey Pakistan

US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke, left, Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Ar...

An international forum in Turkey on Tuesday sought to boost aid and investment in Pakistan as a way to support its democratic institutions and curb violence there.
The meeting of the "Friends of Democratic Pakistan" group followed fighting between the Pakistani government and the Taliban that forced more than 2 million people to flee earlier this year.
Pakistani border areas have also served as sanctuaries for militants fighting in Afghanistan, where the U.S. and its NATO partners face a growing insurgency.
"The recent situation regarding the internally displaced persons affects millions of people awaiting urgent relief" in Pakistan, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said at the conference in an Ottoman palace on the shores of the Bosporus strait.
"The challenges posed by extremism and terrorism, by their nature, have ramifications across borders," he said.
The conference on helping Pakistan includes delegates from 20 nations as well as the United Nations and other international institutions. Among those attending were the foreign ministers of Iran and Canada, and Richard Holbrooke, the U.S. special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Holbrooke, who recently visited the two countries, pledged U.S. assistance to Pakistan to help tackle an energy crisis that sees millions go without power each day. He said resolving the energy shortfall and improving Pakistan's economy was vital to ensure long-term stability.
In Istanbul, Pakistan was pitching projects in energy, institution-building and other areas, and seeking help from the private and state sectors of nations in the "Friends" group.
One topic of discussion was a reconstruction project that seeks to help displaced people in Malakand, a Pakistani region where Islamic militants have been active. An army offensive dislodged Taliban fighters in Malakand and the adjacent Swat region after the Taliban advanced to within 60 miles (100 kilometers) of the capital, Islamabad.
The "Friends" group was launched a year ago under the auspices of the United Nations, and held a ministerial-level meeting in Tokyo on the sidelines of a donor conference in April. The group has promised to help build dams, power stations, schools and clinics.


Updated : 2021-07-29 05:24 GMT+08:00