South Asia Delegation
Reacting to reports that more than 289 people had died in the Karachi clothing factory fire, West Midlands Euro MP Phil Bennion said the disaster highlighted the need for the EU to help the government crack down on corruption and enforce safety laws properly.
The Lib Dem MEP, whose constituency includes hundreds of thousands of people from the Pakistani diaspora, was part of an EU Parliamentary Delegation visit to Islamabad in July.
Lib Dem Euro MP Phil Bennion, a key member of an official EU delegation to Pakistan next week, has warned that any solution to the long-running Kashmir conflict cannot ignore the wishes of the local population.
At a seminar at the European Parliament which he co-sponsored, Dr Bennion said increasing dialogue between the Indian and Pakistan governments was 'a clear opportunity' for progress to genuine reconciliation, but that any temptation for a bilateral carve-up of Kashmir without a plebiscite of the local population should be resisted.
Lib Dem Euro MPs are pressing the EU Transport Commissioner to clarify the safety status of PIA, Pakistan's national airline, after recent action to improve maintenance procedures on planes based in Pakistan.
West Midlands MEP Phil Bennion and four colleagues have written to Siim Kallas to explain what the Commission's view is of Pakistan's airline safety regime and whether there is any possibility of a ban on PIA flights from EU airports.
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