COAS seeks Iran’s anti-terror efforts along border: Islamabad, Tehran agree to form JWGs to strengthen bilateral ties,
Prime Minister Imran Khan has emphasised on early completion and operationalisation of border sustenance markets for economic uplift of people living on both sides of Pakistan-Iran border.
Talking to Iranian Interior Minister Dr Ahmad Vahidi on Monday, the prime minister emphasised the importance of close bilateral collaboration to boost trade and regional connectivity.
He expressed satisfaction over positive momentum in brotherly relations between Pakistan and Iran and said that vast potential exists for enhanced collaboration in diverse fields.
Underscoring that the Pakistan-Iran border is a border of peace and friendship, the prime minister underlined the importance of joint cooperation to address security issues. He thanked the Iranian government and the supreme leader for steadfast support for the just resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute.
The prime minister expressed satisfaction over convergence of views regarding a peaceful and stable Afghanistan and underscored the importance of close coordination between the two countries.
He stressed the need for urgent actions by the international community to prevent humanitarian crisis and economic meltdown in Afghanistan and measures to enhance practical engagement, strengthen stability, and counter terrorism.
The Iranian interior minister conveyed cordial greetings of Iranian leadership to the prime minister and reaffirmed Iran’s desire to strengthen bilateral relations in all aspects.
Meanwhile, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa has stressed upon the need to put in collective efforts to deny any space or liberty of action to be exploited by miscreants along the Pakistan-Iran border.
The army chief said this while talking to Iranian Interior Minister Ahmad Vahidi who along with a delegation visited General Headquarters (GHQ), said the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) in a statement on Monday.
According to the ISPR, geo-strategic environment, particularly regional security situation and bilateral cooperation in defence and security domains, were discussed during the meeting. Pakistan-Iran border security mechanism including border markets also came under discussion, added the military’s media wing.
The COAS said that enhanced cooperation between the two brotherly neighbours is vital for peace and stability in the region. Terming the Pakistan-Iran border as a border of peace and friendship, the COAS highlighted the need to put in collective efforts to deny any space or liberty of action to be exploited by miscreants along the border.
The visiting dignitary, while acknowledging stability in Afghanistan as collective regional responsibility, appreciated Pakistan’s efforts for peace and stability, particularly humanitarian assistance being rendered to mitigate challenges faced by people of Afghanistan.
Earlier in the day, Pakistan and Iran agreed to form Joint working groups (JWGs) to strengthen bilateral relations. The understanding was reached in a joint declaration issued after the meeting of a nine-member visiting Iranian delegation led by Interior Minister Dr. Ahmad Vahidi with Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed.
The two sides agreed to set up markets on Pakistan-Iran borders and increase the number of border terminals. The two sides also exchanged views on completing fencing work on the Pakistan-Iran border at the earliest.
It was agreed that the territory of Pakistan and Iran should not be used for terrorist activities against each other. The meeting also discussed the regional security situation, looming humanitarian catastrophe in Afghanistan and other important issues.
It also discussed prisoner exchanges and facilitating pilgrims. Ways to prevent illegal human immigration and drug trafficking were also discussed during the meeting.
On the occasion, the Iranian interior minister strongly condemned recent terrorist attacks in Pakistan and said his country considers terrorist attack on Pakistan as an attack on Iran. The Iranian minister said that Pakistan and Iran have long lasting historic ties.
On his part, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed thanked Iran for supporting Pakistan’s position on Indian Illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir. He said the recent increase in terrorist incidents is regrettable and joint cooperation is needed to end it.
Rashid said the international community should help the Afghan people as severe scarcity of resources could lead to a humanitarian crisis in that country. He said Pakistan would continue to play its positive role for lasting peace in the region and welfare of Afghan people.