ISLAMABAD - Pakistan's leading experts on health, education, population and human rights made a resounding appeal for prevention and treatment of breast cancer that claims hundreds of women's lives each year in Pakistan.

Marking the Breast Cancer Awareness Month - the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) in collaboration with the UNWOMEN and UN Resident Coordinator's Office held a multi-stakeholders consultation on 'Early Detection Save Lives' - in Islamabad on Wednesday morning.

The initiative which was inspired by a meeting on the issue between the UN Secretary General Ban ki-Moon and Dr Fahmida Mirza, former speaker of the National Assembly in August this year, called for development of a national frame work to comprehensively scope the prevalence and impediments to early detection and quality treatment of breast cancer in Pakistan. Dr Fahmida Mirza, herself a survivor of breast cancer, was commended for her heroic leading of the cause in Pakistan.

The experts agreed that awareness regarding the disease had a direct link with literacy, education and right to access information.

While breast cancer itself could be treated if detected early, what was equally life threatening was ignorance and negligence about the disease.

Dr Fahmida Mirza, ex NA speaker, Yasmeen Rehman, Shahnaz Wazir Ali,  Dr Attiya Inayatullah, Dr Sania Nishter, Dr Nehal Masood, Farid Ullah Khan were among the speakers.