News / Middle East

    Leaders of Muslim States Set to Hold Summit in Pakistan

    People ride motorcycles past a banner promoting the Eighth D-8 Summit in Islamabad November 21, 2012.People ride motorcycles past a banner promoting the Eighth D-8 Summit in Islamabad November 21, 2012.
    x
    People ride motorcycles past a banner promoting the Eighth D-8 Summit in Islamabad November 21, 2012.
    People ride motorcycles past a banner promoting the Eighth D-8 Summit in Islamabad November 21, 2012.
    Ayaz Gul
    Leaders of eight developing Muslim countries, including Iran, Turkey and Egypt, are meeting in Islamabad Thursday to discuss how they can increase trade and investment. The combined population of what is known as the Developing-8 or D-8 countries is around one billion, with a market worth $1 trillion. However, observers say that the proceedings are likely to be overshadowed by the Gaza conflict.

    The presidents of Iran, Indonesia, Egypt and Nigeria, along with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, are scheduled to attend Thursday’s D-8 summit, which will be hosted by Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari. Malaysia and Bangladesh are sending lower level officials.

    Officials say their discussions will focus on how to boost trade and jointly tackle the effects of the global economic recession on their nations.

    On Wednesday, the foreign ministers from the D-8 countries held a meeting to set the scene for the summit, with Pakistan assuming the chairmanship of the group from Nigeria, which has completed its two-year term.

    Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar welcomed the delegates to Islamabad, calling the event significant in addressing collective issues and achieving a sustainable future. She said Pakistan has invited corporate and business leaders from D-8 nations, and stressed the importance of a public-private partnership for establishing strong trade links.

    “The D-8 group of countries came together in 1997 because we collectively believe that a better future for our people is within grasp. We share an intrinsic optimism about the benefits of working together, reducing the barriers between us, and enriching the lives of the one billion people that make up the D-8 family," said Khar.

    In recent years, Islamabad has rarely hosted major international events, mainly because of ever growing security concerns stemming from the country’s fight against the Taliban and al-Qaida-led extremists, who have responded with frequent suicide bombings and other terrorist attacks.

    Professor Hasan Askari Rizvi, an independent political and defense analyst, stressed the importance of Thursday’s gathering for Pakistan.

    “D-8 meeting will boost Pakistan’s image abroad as a place where top leaders can go and hold meetings. This will negate or nullify the perception about Pakistan that it is a state in turmoil where nothing normal can be done," said Rizvi.

    But many believe the meeting in Islamabad will be overshadowed by the Gaza conflict, as international and regional leaders scramble to de-escalate the violence there. This was evident in Pakistani Foreign Minister Khar’s opening remarks at the Wednesday’s ministerial-level meeting.

    “I know that some of my colleagues have come early morning to Pakistan directly from Gaza. The innocent people of Gaza are in our thoughts and prayers, and Pakistan once again condemns Israel’s aggression against the people of Palestine," said Khar.

    Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Nigerian leader Goodluck Jonathan and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan have already arrived in Islamabad amid extremely tight security around the Pakistani capital.

    To enhance security, a public holiday has been declared on Thursday in Islamabad.

    Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi is also due to attend the summit, and his arrival will mark the first visit by an Egyptian president to Pakistan in four decades. He plans to hold bilateral talks with Pakistani leaders after the summit and is scheduled to address a special session of Pakistan’s parliament on Friday.

    You May Like

    No More Space Race for US, Rivalry Gives Way to Collaboration

    What began as a struggle for dominance in space between two world powers has changed entirely to one of joint efforts

    Beijing Warns Critics Over South China Sea Dispute

    Official warns critics that the more they challenge China's position regarding disputed territories in one of world’s busiest waterways, the more it will push back

    Move Over Millennials, Here Comes iGeneration

    How the first generation to be born, almost literally, with a smartphone in hand, might change America

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: ali baba from: new york
    November 22, 2012 6:41 AM
    bilnds can not lead a blind. all these countries have serious ecnomic problems.all these countries are marked by corruption ,iignorance . fanatic of islam will not get the life back for dead body.

    by: Elawure Osamagbe from: PORT HARCOURT NIGERIA
    November 22, 2012 6:25 AM
    I believe that VOA has join the long list of what i will call WESTERN NEWS AGENCY, though i am not a Muslim i know when a news is being planted to sow discord and religious strife in a Nation. The summit being referred to as a summit of Islamic leaders is noting of such rather its a summit Is 8 developing Nations to say otherwise or label it a gathering leader is a white lie and also that VOA is practicing what will call cash and carry journalism, PLEAS VOA Nigeria has enough religious problem already and report such as this will do our country more harm than good please practice journalism ethically and stop this biased and sensational reporting

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    British Government to Resettle Unaccompanied Child Refugeesi
    X
    Henry Ridgwell
    May 06, 2016 9:24 PM
    After criticism from lawmakers across the political spectrum, the British government has signaled that it will accept thousands of unaccompanied Syrian child refugees who have fled to Europe. It follows a campaign by a group of former Jewish refugees who were given refuge in Britain from Nazi persecution in the 1930s. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video British Government to Resettle Unaccompanied Child Refugees

    After criticism from lawmakers across the political spectrum, the British government has signaled that it will accept thousands of unaccompanied Syrian child refugees who have fled to Europe. It follows a campaign by a group of former Jewish refugees who were given refuge in Britain from Nazi persecution in the 1930s. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Strangers Share Secrets Through Postcards

    Frank Warren owns a million secrets. Strangers from around the world send him postcards with their confessions, their disappointments, and their hopes for the future, all anonymously. He displays his favorites online and in exhibits, and shares them with audiences in sold-out appearances around the globe. As VOA's Julie Taboh reports, what started as a simple social experiment has evolved into a multi-faceted and hugely successful global phenomenon.
    Video

    Video Largest Ground-based Telescope Under Construction

    While NASA's engineers are nearing the final phase of assembling the new James Webb space telescope, scheduled to be deployed in 2018, an international consortium led by the U.S. is laying foundations and building parts for a ground-based telescope, much larger than any other. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Image Recognition Market Seen Doubling by 2020

    From auto tagging on Facebook to self-driving cars, image recognition technology as it exists today is still in its beginning phases, experts say — and will soon change the way users and corporations interact with the physical world. VOA's Ramon Taylor reports.
    Video

    Video Child Labor in Afghanistan Remains a Problem

    With war still raging in Afghanistan, the country also faces the problem of child labor as families put their school-age children to work to help make ends meet. But, thanks to VOA's Afghan Service, two families whose children had been working in a brick-making factory - to earn their livings and pay off family debts - now have a new lease on life. Zabihullah Ghazi reports.
    Video

    Video Kurdish Troops Recount Firefight Which Killed US Navy SEAL

    A U.S. Navy SEAL killed Tuesday, when Islamic State fighters punched through Kurdish lines in northern Iraq, was part of a quick reaction force sent to extract other U.S. troops trapped by the surprise offensive. VOA's Kawa Omar spoke with Kurdish troops in the town of Telskuf -- the scene of what U.S. officials called a "dynamic firefight."
    Video

    Video British Lawmakers Warn EU Exit Talks Could Last A Decade

    Leaving the European Union would mean difficult negotiations that could take years to complete, according to a bipartisan group of British lawmakers. While the group did not recommend a vote either way, the lawmakers noted trade deals between the EU and non-EU states take between four and nine years on average. Henry Ridgwell reports on the mounting debate over whether Britain should stay or exit the EU as the June vote approaches.
    Video

    Video NASA Astronauts Train for Commercial Space Flights

    Since the last Shuttle flight in 2011, the United States has been relying on Russian rockets to launch fresh crews to the International Space Station. But that may change in the next few years. NASA and several private space companies are developing advanced capsules capable of taking humans into low orbit and beyond. As VOA's George Putic reports, astronauts are already training for commercial spacecraft in flight simulators.
    Video

    Video US Worried Political Chaos in Iraq Will Hurt IS Fight

    The White House is expressing concern about rising political chaos in Iraq and the impact it could have on the fight against the Islamic State. The U.S. says Iraq needs a stable, central government to help push back the group. But some say Baghdad may not have a unified government any time soon. VOA's White House correspondent Mary Alice Salinas reports.
    Video

    Video Press Freedom in Myanmar Fragile, Limited

    As Myanmar begins a new era with a democratically elected government, many issues of the past confront the new leadership. Among them is press freedom in a country where journalists have been routinely harassed or jailed.
    Video

    Video Taliban Threats Force Messi Fan to Leave Afghanistan

    A young Afghan boy, who recently received autographed shirts and a football from his soccer hero Lionel Messi, has fled his country due to safety concerns. He and his family are now taking refuge in neighboring Pakistan. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from Islamabad.
    Video

    Video Major Rubbish Burning Experiment Captures Destructive Greenhouse Gases

    The world’s first test to capture environmentally harmful carbon dioxide gases from the fumes of burning rubbish took place recently in Oslo, Norway. The successful experiment at the city's main incinerator plant, showcased a method for capturing most of the carbon dioxide. VOA’s Deborah Block has more.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora