ISLAMABAD: Minister of State for Law and Justice Zafarullah Khan said on Wednesday that women were playing a pivotal role in the national development and prosperity.
“The elimination of discrimination against women is our top priority. We are committed to ensure women their rightful place in the society,” the state minister told UK Special Representative for Gender Equality Joanna Roper, who called on the former at the Ministry of Law and Justice.
Khan, who also serves as a special assistant to the prime minister for human rights, said Pakistan has made a lot of progress in political empowerment of women as reserved seats for women representatives have been kept at all levels.
Regarding the issue of honour killing, the SAPM said it was one of the most critical problems that the country had been facing and the government was determined to adopt all possible ways to address it. “In this regard, Pakistan has passed anti-honour killing and anti-rape bills, which guarantee mandatory prison sentences of 25 years and strips families of the right to legally pardon the perpetrators of so-called ‘honour killings’,” he said.
The minister further said that Pakistan and UK enjoy deep-rooted relations, based on shared history, experiences and same eye for equality, reinforced by strong people to people contact. “This relationship between two countries not only serves our national interests but also contributes to stability in our region and beyond. Pakistan considers UK a close friend and we want to increase the bilateral relations between two countries.”
Meanwhile, the UK diplomat lauded the SAPM for his commitment to promote and protect the human rights and fundamentals freedom.