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Delegates of SAARC member states discuss gender policies

Jul 27, 2015

Delegates of SAARC member states discuss gender policies

Our correspondent
Monday, July 27, 2015 
From Print Edition

Islamabad

Member states of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) on Sunday were urged to replicate the best practices in their respective regions.

The delegates of Saarc member states gathered to discuss gender policies and future prospects of mutual cooperation at regional level in the Saarc First Gender Policy Advocacy Group (GPAG) Meeting hosted by the Ministry of Law, Justice and Human Rights, Pakistan, from July 26 to 27.

The inaugural session for the meeting was held before the commencing of the technical sessions. The meeting is a result of the conviction of the SAARC countries commitment to work together for the rights of the women in South Asia.

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Cabinet and State Minister Barrister Zafarullah Khan was the chief guest at the inaugural session. Other speakers included Joint Secretary Ministry of Law, Justice and Human Rights Humera Azam Khan, Director General Foreign office Muhammad Nafees Zakria, Director Saarc Najwa Fathima, Rebecca Reichmann from UN Women. Delegations from all eight SAARC countries are participating in this meeting.

The speakers welcomed the delegates from the Saarc countries and wished for fruitful deliberation in the two days meeting.

In her speech, Humera Azam Khan shared the background of the SAARC Group and informed that GPAG has been established in the wake of Addu Declaration adopted by the Seventeenth SAARC Summit in November, 2011. The Addu Declaration endorsed the convening of an Intergovernmental Expert Group Meeting to discuss the establishment of a regional mechanism for empowerment of women and gender equality in the region.

Nafees Zakaria stated that it is an honour for Pakistan to host the first meeting of Saarc’s Gender Policy Advocacy Group (GPAG). “This meeting will define our programme of work including strategic results frame work and action plan to accelerate progress towards gender equality and women empowerment within Saarc countries,” she said.

Barrister Zafarullah Khan expressed his gratitude for the SAARC delegations and emphasised that women shall be treated at an equal basis to the men. He further stated that the Government of Pakistan has enacted a number of legislations for women empowerment and it is an honour for Pakistan to host first meeting and to compile first GPAG report. He emphasised that the SAARC Member States must replicate the best practices in their respective regions

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