Islamabad - Former President Asif Ali Zardari yesterday assured full support to the women against all forms of exploitation and discrimination.

In a statement on the eve of International Women Day, he said, “I wish to assure the women of Pakistan of full support of the Pakistan People’s Party in their struggle against all forms of exploitation and discrimination.”

“I also wish to acknowledge the great strides made by our women in their forward march towards gender equality. In marching towards this cherished goal they are also seeking to make Pakistan more tolerant, harmonious and secure,” he added.

He said the PPP will never allow the perpetuation of discrimination against women and their exploitation in the name of religion.

“Our approach to rebuilding the structure of women empowerment in the country is based on the premise that equal rights for women is the most basic and fundamental human right,” he said.

Zardari called upon the government to address at least two basic issues bearing on the protection of women: One, strengthen the National Commission on the Status of Women to enable it play its role effectively in protecting and promoting the rights of women.

Two, the Anti Honor Killings and the Anti Torture Bills already passed by the Senate and referred to the Joint sitting of the Parliament be passed immediately to protect women from the most barbaric forms of exploitation. “This indeed is a doable and a practical way forward in the quest to protect women,” he said.