ISTANBUL, 4 November 2016: The Federal Minister for Human Rights, Senator Kamran Michael, represented Pakistan at the 6th Session of the Ministerial Conference on the Role of Women in the Development of OIC Member States held at Istanbul from 1-3 November 2016. Theme of the conference was  “The Status of Women in the OIC Member States in Light of the Current Challenges.” President of the Republic of Turkey, H.E. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and First Lady, Mrs. Emine Erdoğan were present at the inaugural ceremony. The meeting discussed matters concerning women empowerment and women’s role in the development of the OIC Member States.

Delivering national statement on behalf of Pakistan, Minister Kamran Michael underlined that Government of Pakistan was pursuing an integrated policy for women empowerment underpinned by legal, institutional, and administrative measures. He highlighted that long-term national planning framework “Vision 2025” commits to pursue women empowerment as a key priority area across all sectors of planning and development. It focuses on providing an enabling environment to every woman to develop her full potential and to equally share benefits of economic and social development.

Minister Kamran Michael highlighted that, among others, an autonomous Commission on Status of Women, Benazir Income Support Programme, 10% quota for women in employment, setting up of Women Development Department at provincial level, and Economic Empowerment of Women through Prime Minister’s Youth Programme demonstrated a strong commitment of Pakistan to protect, promote and empower women in Pakistan. He added that Pakistan was implementing Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women that had helped to mainstream women’s issues in national policies.

The Minister also had interaction with other participating heads of delegations on the sidelines. He met with H.E. Ms. Fatma Betül, Minister for Family and Social Policy of Turkey, and H. E. Dr. Masoumeh Ebtekar, Vice President of the Islamic Republic of Iran and discussed matters of mutual interest.