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coronavirus
Coronavirus
VERY HIGH
Source: covid.gov.pk
Pakistan Deaths
29,029
1024hr
Pakistan Cases
1,333,521
5,03424hr
Sindh
505,930
Punjab
454,372
Balochistan
33,729
Islamabad
111,855
KPK
182,419

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) has asked all federal ministers to strictly adhere to instructions issued with respect to meetings with ambassadors of foreign countries and diplomatic functions.

On January 4, 2022, during discussion in Federal Cabinet, the practice of Ministers meeting directly with the ambassadors without the knowledge of Foreign Office was termed as contravention of standing instructions.

The need for setting up the meetings through Foreign Office was stressed, so that the Ministry could also give its input on overall diplomatic relations with the country, and notes could be kept in the Foreign Office for record. It was also pointed out that the representation of the Federal Ministers at diplomatic functions may be regulated as per the prescribed procedure.

According to a communication, Protocol Division of Foreign Office has officially informed all the ministries that in its meeting held on January 4, 2022, the Federal Cabinet directed strict adherence to the standing instructions of the Foreign Office with regard to meetings of the Ministers with the ambassadors and in attending diplomatic functions hosted by the foreign embassies.

Director General (State Protocol) Ali Haider Altaf has reminded all the Ministries that instructions in this regard have been circulated to the Ministries/Divisions from time to time. Relevant excerpts from the Cabinet Division’s U.O of April 19 2012 regarding SOPs/guidelines for arranging calls for visiting delegations and resident ambassadors on Pakistani dignitaries were included.

On April 19, 2012, the Prime Minister had approved the following SOPs/guidelines for visiting delegations and Resident Diplomats for arranging calls on Pakistani dignitaries: (i) the concerned foreign mission will forward requests only to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for arranging calls/meetings of visiting delegation resident ambassador/diplomats with Pakistani dignitaries; (ii) in case such requests are received directly by other Ministries/ departments/institutions, concurrence of the Foreign Office shall be sought before a final decision is taken; (iii) embassies are advised to route their requests through the Foreign Office; (iv) Consulates located in provincial capitals will route their requests to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs through the concerned Camp Office(s) of this Ministry; (v) Ministry of Foreign Affairs may decide on the level and suitability of arranging the requested calls in light of the overall state of Pakistan’s bilateral relations with the country concerned; (vi) the principle of reciprocity may be upheld in arranging meetings and deciding level of access of Pakistani dignitaries for meeting the foreign delegations and diplomats; and (vii) an officer of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will be part of the Pakistani call group for all such meetings so that a record may be maintained at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.”

According to Director General (State Protocol) has asked all the Ministries/Divisions to strict comply with the decision of the Federal Cabinet.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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