Islamabad: President Mamnoon Hussain and his Sri Lankan counterpart Maithripala Sirisena Saturday agreed to work together for the regional peace, bilateral cooperation and enhancement of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) role. During their meeting at the Aiwan-e-Sadr, both sides agreed that they would continue their close cooperation for the regional peace, stability, development and prosperity of the people, a press release said.Both sides stressed upon further enhancement of SAARC role by making it more effective. The presidents held a brief one-on-one meeting and later on, joined by delegations from both sides.
President Mamnoon Hussain welcomed the visiting dignitary and said his participation during the Pakistan Day ceremony reflected the close ties between the two countries. Sri Lankan president also expressed his gratitude and said it was a matter of pleasure for him and an honour for the Sri Lankan people. He said they considered Pakistan as their real brother and close friend.
President Sirisena expressed his satisfaction over the increasing cooperation in different sectors including defence and expressed the confidence that it would witness further boost in future. He reiterated his country’s support to Pakistan in its efforts against terrorism and expressed his satisfaction over the achievements against it.
He also thanked the president for extending academic and training scholarships to Sri Lankan students and officers. The meeting was also attended by Sri Lankan minister Wasantha Senanayake, minister for rehabilitation MLAM Hizbullah, members of parliament from Sri Lanka Syed Ali Zahir Moulana, Abdullah Maroof and SM Marikkar and minister for SAFRON Abdul Qadir Baloch, foreign secretary and other high officials.
President Mamnoon Hussain proposed for working together to increase bilateral trade between the two countries to which his Sri Lankan counterpart agreed. He also underlined the need to boost air and maritime linkages so that the e cooperation in business and industry besides, other sectors, could be strengthened. Earlier, upon his arrival at the Aiwan e Sadr, the Sri Lankan president was received by President Mamnoon Hussain. Children clad in traditional dress, presented bouquets to the visiting dignitary.