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Agencies
May 19, 2021

Pakistan, Turkey vow to jointly raise Palestine issue at UNGA

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Agencies
May 19, 2021

 Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi meets his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu in Ankara. 

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi met his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu in Ankara on Tuesday wherein both the leaders vowed to collectively raise the Palestine issue at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) session.

Qureshi, who arrived in Turkish capital on Prime Minister Imran Khan’s directive, on a diplomatic mission to support Palestine, resolved that Pakistan would never leave the Palestinian people alone.

From Turkey, the foreign minister will leave for New York along with Turkish, Sudanese and Palestinian foreign ministers. In New York, he will speak at the UNGA session, meet various dignitaries and hold talks with local and international media representatives and present Pakistan’s views on the situation in Palestine. Both the foreign ministers met at the Turkish foreign ministry and discussed the situation in Palestine.

The Turkish foreign minister lauded Qureshi’s address at the foreign ministerial level emergency meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Sunday wherein the latter had reiterated Pakistan’s continued and fullest support for the people of Palestine.

Foreign Minister Qureshi also appreciated the firm and categorical stance of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the Turkish government on the issue of Palestine. He said the whole Muslim world was hurt due to the Israeli attacks and incidents of violence during the holy month of Ramadan and Eid-ul-Fitr. Both the foreign ministers strongly condemned the Israeli aggression against the Palestinians and their forced eviction.

Earlier, talking to a Pakistani television channel, Qureshi said attempts were being made to keep the Palestinian foreign minister from the UNGA session. He said as the session was convened to discuss the plight of the Palestinian people so the debate should be opened by Palestinian foreign minister. Qureshi said their delegation would await the Palestinian foreign minister to join them in Istanbul.

Separately, Special Representative to the Prime Minister on Religious Harmony and Middle East Hafiz Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi said on Tuesday Youm-e-Palestine (Palestine Day) would be observed across the country on Friday (May 21) to denounce Israeli atrocities and express solidarity with Palestinian people.

Talking to the media, he said Israel was constantly targeting Palestinian children. “There can be no compromise on the sanctity of Qibla-e-Awwal (Al-Aqsa Mosque),” he said, adding: “Pakistani people have expressed solidarity with the people of Palestine, which is unprecedented in the Islamic world.”

He said Prime Minister Khan in his meeting with Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) secretary general discussed the Palestinian issue, adding: “Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi is going to United Nations to represent Muslim Ummah”.

Ashrafi said he had already expressed solidarity with the Palestinian ambassador in a meeting held the other day. “OIC is an organisation of the Muslim Ummah, and Pakistan will stand by the decisions taken by the OIC,” he said, adding the issues of Kashmir and Palestine would have to be resolved.”

Meanwhile, the federal cabinet has decided to send medical aid to Palestine on humanitarian grounds in view of the medical emergency faced by Palestinians as a result of Israeli aggression. Prime Minister Imran Khan chaired the federal cabinet meeting in Islamabad on Tuesday.

Later, briefing the media persons about the decisions taken in the cabinet meeting, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said Prime Minister Khan had provided leadership to the Muslim Ummah from day one on the Palestine issue, adding the Palestinian leadership also acknowledged Pakistan’s firm stance on the matter.