ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has always supported the unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Yemen and would continue to extend all possible assistance for restoration of complete peace and stability in the war-torn country.

This was stated by Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs, Sartaj Aziz in a meeting with Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of the Republic of Yemen, Abdulmalik Abdul Jalil Al Mekhlafi, who called on him here Monday.

The Foreign Minister of Yemen is on a two-day visit to Pakistan from March 12 to 14, a foreign office statement said.

Welcoming the Foreign Minister , Sartaj Aziz underlined the close coordination Pakistan and Yemen have maintained at the bilateral and multilateral levels in various areas.

Mr. Mekhlafi thanked Sartaj Aziz for Pakistan’s continued political support and economic assistance to Yemen.

He also briefed Sartaj about the current situation in Yemen, the efforts by the Government of Yemen to pursue the path of peace and reconciliation rather than conflict, as well as the success achieved so far in subduing the threat posed by terrorist networks in the country.

He also discussed issues related to serious humanitarian situation in Yemen, suffering from serious food shortages anywhere in the world.

He also highlighted the efforts being undertaken by the government to address multiple security, political and economic challenges confronting Yemen.

Sartaj Aziz appreciated the efforts of the internationally recognized Government of President Abd Rabu Mansour Al-Hadi towards restoration of peace, harmony and stability in the country.

He also noted with satisfaction that these efforts had acquired control of over 80% territory of Yemen, hoping that with the international support situation in remaining parts of the country would also be brought under control.

He added that the menace of terrorism posed common threat in the region and could only be defeated through coordinated efforts by all countries.

Bilateral cooperation between Pakistan and Yemen in various areas was also reviewed.

Sartaj Aziz also, particularly, thanked the Government of Yemen for their assistance in recent release of seven Pakistani prisoners held in Yemeni jails.

Progress of an early release of 3 remaining Pakistani prisoners in Yemen and 12 Yemeni prisoners in Pakistan, who have completed their sentences, was also reviewed.

Both sides noted that over 300 Yemeni students studying in various universities in Pakistan under the Pakistan Technical Assistance Programme provide a strong bond to further strengthen friendship between the two countries.

Sartaj Aziz added that Pakistan would be happy to continue this important programme and provide more facilities to new students in the coming years.