London: Hundreds of demonstrators from India, Nepal and Tibet gathered outside the European Parliament in Brussels on Thursday and protested against "atrocities against minorities in Pakistan and Afghanistan".
The protest was not against the "people of Pakistan or Islam" but it was against the "incompetence of the Pakistani government to stop ill treatment of minorities", Sanjay Groover, one of the organisers was quoted as saying by EuAsiaNews.
"We want the EU to raise the issue of the treatment of the minorities in Pakistan in tomorrow's summit with Mr Gilani," Groover said, referring to the meeting scheduled Friday between the European Union and Pakistan.
On Friday, Herman Van Rompuy, president of the European Council, and José Manuel Barroso, president of the European Commission will meet Pakistan Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani.
The EU is expected to propose a five-year engagement plan with Pakistan to promote dialogue on counter-terrorism, non-proliferation and trade. It will also discuss regional issues, trade, energy, security and promotion of human rights and democracy.
"Pakistan is becoming a solid partner for the EU," sources said.
The sources said the water issue between India and Pakistan has not been put on the agenda. On the Kashmir issue, the sources said the EU is aware of the sensitivity and will get involved only if asked by both the parties.
The EU will also increase its development aid to Pakistan from the current EUR 50 billion annually to EUR 75 billion from 2011 till 2013.
First Published: Friday, June 04, 2010, 10:46