Pakistan ready for fullest cooperation to SCO in terrorism elimination: Tehmina Janjua

APP43-23 ISLAMABAD: May 23 - A group photo of the participants after inauguration of SCO-RATS legal experts meeting by Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua. APP

ISLAMABAD, May 23 (APP):Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua Wednesday said Pakistan is ready to extend its fullest cooperation to Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) member countries to effectively eliminate the menace of terrorism and extremism from the region.
Inaugurating the meeting of Legal Experts Group of SCO–Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) in Islamabad, she said Pakistan is cognizant of the threats posed by terrorism, separatism and extremism to our region and beyond.
The five day conference from May 22 to 26 was being hosted by National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA).
She said Pakistan has lost thousands of its citizens, law enforcement personnel and suffered economic losses of over 120 billion dollar. Pakistan’s resolve to fight terrorism and extremism has not diminished despite human and colossal financial losses.
She said terrorism could not be linked with any country, religion or nation. Pakistan has been able to turn the tide through comprehensive efforts of past several years and supported by a firm domestic political consensus.
The foreign secretary said Pakistan supports SCO consensus that as we engage in the fight against terrorism, we must respect the norms and principles of international law, UN Charter and shun double standards. Terrorism cannot and should not be identified with any religion, individual countries or nationalities.
She said Pakistan’s National Counter Extremism Policy focuses on the rule of law, service delivery, citizens and media engagements, integrated education reform, reformation, rehabilitation, reintegration, and renunciation of terrorism by extremist elements and promotion of culture as its major facets.
She said SCO holds special significance for Pakistan and the country takes pride in becoming a full member of the SCO which offers a unique new model of inter-state cooperation for peace, security, connectivity and sustainable development.
Tehmina Janjua said the SCO holds tremendous potential for connectivity, trade, energy and economic development. It can lead to progress and prosperity for our entire region. She said Pakistan looks forward to bringing further vitality to this vibrant organization. With a consumer market of over 200 million people, vast business potential and a rapidly modernizing infrastructure, Pakistan offers the SCO enormous opportunities for mutually beneficial cooperation.
She said Pakistan’s historical and cultural ties, as well as strong economic and strategic links with the SCO members, can act as an enabler in realizing the SCO’s vision.
She said Pakistan has defeated the menace of extremism and terrorism after devising a concerted national strategy to get rid of the menace. The national strategy consisted of educational reforms, taking media, citizens on board. Pakistan endured heavy economic losses in the war against terrorism and extremism. Despite that Pakistan is determined to exterminate the menace of terrorism and extremism from the country.
She expressed the hope that the SCO could prove an effective forum in eliminating the menaces of terrorism and extremism. She urged member countries to take benefits from the experiences of Pakistan in eliminating terrorism and extremism.