MULTAN: Talking to the media after visiting a quarantine center in Multan, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Wednesday urged the international community to restructure the debts of third world countries to help them fight the coronavirus pandemic.
He said the third world countries, having limited resources and fragile health care systems, needed support.
Shah Mahmood Qureshi said the resources being spent on debt servicing and payment of interest could be utilized by them on saving lives and improving their health care systems.
He said coronavirus is a challenge which never before witnessed by world. No continent has escaped from the virus as 199 countries are combating the challenge.
The minister said people must strictly follow the guidelines given by the government regarding social distancing and adopting a hygienic lifestyle to overcome the coronavirus threat.
Qureshi discusses coronavirus pandemic with Saudi Arabian counterpart
FM Shah Mahmood Qureshi telephoned his Saudi counterpart Prince Faisal Bin Farhan Al-Saud and held detailed discussion regarding the challenge posed by coronavirus to the global community.
The Foreign Minister expressed deep grief and sorrow over the deaths of Saudi nationals due to coronavirus and appreciated the timely steps taken by the Saudi government to contain the virus.
Shah Mahmood Qureshi also apprised the Saudi Foreign Minister about the steps taken by Pakistan to check the spread of the contagion.
The foreign minister pointed out that developing countries such as Pakistan are facing grave economic difficulties to face this global challenge. Therefore, Prime Minister Imran Khan has suggested restructuring of loans of these countries so that they could use their resources to cope with the pandemic and save the precious lives.
Shah Mahmood Qureshi strongly denounced the missile attacks on Saudi capital Riyadh and Jizan and appreciated the timely response of Saudi forces to save the precious lives and infrastructure.
The foreign minister reaffirmed Pakistan’s support to the security and territorial integrity of the Kingdom.
The Saudi Foreign Minister that the G-20 Virtual Summit hosted by Saudi Arabia discussed various aspects of financial assistance to the developing countries including the proposal of restructuring their loans.
The two foreign ministers agreed to continue their consultation process for the promotion of bilateral cooperation and to meet the coronavirus challenge.