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Pakistan, Yemen sign five agreements

Pakistan and Yemen signed five agreements here to reinforce ties in the areas of trade, education, sports and tourism.

india Updated: Apr 11, 2006 11:53 IST

Pakistan and Yemen signed five agreements here to reinforce ties in the areas of trade, education, sports and tourism.

"Agreements were signed following talks between visiting Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh and his Pakistani counterpart General Pervez Musharraf in Islamabad," said an official statement issued after the talks on Monday.

The talks focused on ways to promote cooperation in the areas of trade, economy, education, defence, security and counter-terrorism.

President Saleh arrived in Islamabad on Monday afternoon on a two-day state visit.

As a gesture of goodwill, President Pervez Musharraf himself went to the air force base in the garrison town of Rawalpindi to receive his Yemeni counterpart, who last visited Pakistan 19 years ago.

Traditionally, Pakistan's foreign minister receives the visiting heads of state or government at the air base.

The two presidents agreed to further boost annual bilateral trade, which stands at about $62 million.

"They also reaffirmed the desire to further expand and consolidate cooperation in economic, cultural, education and defence fields," the statement said.

Later, President Musharraf and his Yemeni counterpart Saleh told a joint press conference that there was tremendous scope to promote cooperation in the areas of investment and joint ventures.

"We have agreed to invigorate participation of our private sectors for increased bilateral commercial and economic ties," they added.

Musharraf said his country would also cooperate with Yemen in meeting the needs of Yemeni police and security forces.

"The two countries have agreed to intensify intelligence cooperation to combat terrorism and extremism jointly," he stated.

President Musharraf, who visited Yemen last December, also vowed to open the doors of Pakistani universities to Yemeni students, especially its new science and technology institutions of higher learning.