News story

PM and Zardari agree to strengthen ties

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The Prime Minister and Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari have pledged cooperation on economic development, security and cultural issues.

Speaking outside Chequers following a bilateral meeting, the PM said their “unbreakable” relationship was based on mutual interests.

The PM said:

Above all what we’ve been talking about is our strategic partnership and how we can deepen and enhance that partnership to make sure we deal with all the issues where we want to see progress - whether that is in trade, whether it is in education and also in the absolutely vital area of combating terrorism, where we want to work together to combat terrorism.

President Zardari added:

…it is a friendship that will never break no matter what happens.

Storms will come and storms will go and Pakistan and Britain will stand together and face all the difficulties with dignity. We will make sure that the world is a better place for our coming generations tomorrow.

In a joint statement issued after the talks, the PM and President Zardari stressed the importance of ensuring a “strong, stable, secure and economically prosperous Pakistan” and of tackling security issues at both the global and regional levels.

The Prime Minister also acknowledged the sacrifices made by Pakistani military and enforcement agencies in combating extremism.

It was also announced that Home Secretary Theresa May is to travel to Pakistan in the autumn, and the Prime Minister has accepted an invitation to make an “early visit”.