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PRIME Minister Nawaz Sharif and his Turkish counterpart Binali Yildirim talking to each other ahead of a joint press conference on Thursday.—AP
PRIME Minister Nawaz Sharif and his Turkish counterpart Binali Yildirim talking to each other ahead of a joint press conference on Thursday.—AP

ANKARA: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said on Thursday that Pakistan wanted to have friendly and good neighbourly relations with India.

Speaking to reporters accompanying him on his visit to Turkey, he said that even during the election campaign, his party did not adopt the policy of “India bashing” and ended this negative tradition.

“We [Pakistan and India] should maintain good relations and avoid involving in conspiracies against each other,” he said.

The prime minister said Pakistan was grateful to Turkey for its support on the Kashmir issue and also for its stance on Pakistan’s inclusion in the Nuclear Suppliers Group.

Islamabad, Ankara vow to fight common threat of terrorism

Talking about recent incidents of terrorism in the country, Mr Sharif said some elements who were upset with the progress of Pakistan were behind the current spate of terror incidents. He expressed the government’s resolve to eliminate terrorism at all costs.

“With our firm resolve, we will defeat those who are not digesting Pakistan’s success on different fronts,” he said.

The prime minister said that involvement of a foreign hand in terrorist activities in Pakistan could not be denied.

In replay to a question, he agreed that Afghanistan’s soil was being used against Pakistan.

He said Pakistan was in favour of stability in Afghan­istan, which was also in its own interest.

He expressed the confidence that the final match of the Pakistan Super League and Economic Cooperation Organi­sation summit would be held in Pakistan as per schedule despite speculations.

On operation Raddul Fasaad, launched by the Pakistan Army against terrorists, Mr Sharif said the decision in this regard was taken, in principle, at a meeting held at the PM House.

PM Sharif and his Turkish counterpart Binali Yildirim said that both Pakistan and Turkey were facing the threat of terrorism and expressed commitment to close cooperation to fight the menace for the region’s peace.

Addressing a joint press conference after co-chairing the Fifth High Level Strategic Cooperation Council meeting, the two prime ministers expressed the resolve to take strict action against terrorism and extremism within their countries.

Mr Sharif emphasised that “Turkey’s enemies are Pakistan’s enemies” and re-affirmed Pakistan’s commitment to stand with Turkey in its fight against terrorism.

Mr Yildirim said Turkey was making contribution to regional stability despite being a target of terrorism.

Pakistan and Turkey entered into 10 accords of cooperation in diverse areas, including hydrocarbon and solar energy, and financial intelligence related to terrorism financing.

Published in Dawn, February 24th, 2017

Comments (37) Closed

Amir Feb 24, 2017 08:10am

He didnt mentioned the outcome of visit. Or he was on holiday tour.

Horseman Feb 24, 2017 08:15am

I'd like to see Turkish authorities saying something against India. No such thing was mentioned in the article, can Turkey go on record and say they support Pakistan on its stance on Kashmir or on any issue against India. Can Turkey afford India's ire?

SHarry Mann Feb 24, 2017 08:27am

I like Mr. Sharif's this kind of attitude. He never issues unnecessary or unfriendly statements. Although some serious corruption allegations. He is still looking forward and wants cordial relation with India. Because He knows that One day Both countries will have to be friends, there is no option. China too wants.

Pankaj Feb 24, 2017 08:33am

He is really good PM of Pakistan.. We have no doubt about his intentions.

Muslim Medina Feb 24, 2017 08:37am

Yes. Pakistan wants friendly relations with both India and Afghanistan. However, do the two named countries want the same. Both these countries have still not digested creation of Pakistan.

Khan Feb 24, 2017 08:43am

You may think he's corrupt, but he's by far the most enlightened PM Pakistan has had for quite some time.

Khurram Feb 24, 2017 08:50am

It's never too late.

Ali Feb 24, 2017 09:06am

This is the problem with Pakistan -- its involved completely in terrorism but they don't want to talk about it. Instead they keep blaming other countries for not being friendly with them. To the world community Pakistan shows it is surrounded by enemies and so keep getting freebies from the western countries.

Khurram Khan Feb 24, 2017 09:27am

You can't clap with one hand only.

Rajdeep Tyagi Feb 24, 2017 09:29am

This statement is as heartfelt as the statement he gave about him being innocent in Panamagate case.

last word Feb 24, 2017 09:29am

Hope, Mr Sharif took consent of country's foreign policy makers before issuing this statement..

Vijay Feb 24, 2017 09:30am

Good statement. .. how about some action on ground to eradicate all terrorism against neighbouring countries. .

Om Feb 24, 2017 09:33am

Whether one is corrupt allegedly or the there is no response from the other side, peace is always the goal . No matter how bad the situation is peace overture it's never a waste.The status of peace seeking person is always morally higher

conspiracy_theory Feb 24, 2017 09:34am

Jokes are no longer funny when heard multiple times!!

Kittu Feb 24, 2017 09:35am

@Khurram Khan That is true! Sharif talks about friendship then talks about Kashmir! Yes, you cannot clap.

Kabeela Khan Feb 24, 2017 09:49am

@Khan So you mean corruption is no issue at all!

Rahim proud Indian kashmiri Feb 24, 2017 10:17am

Lets give PM Nawaz another chance.But terrorism of all formats both good and bad must be treated as pure evil.

Ron Feb 24, 2017 10:16am

Awesome stuff Mr. Shrif. Now put some words in to action.

BROTHER THERESA Feb 24, 2017 10:31am

I believe he actually means it! It's your security establishment that's been a hindrance in the relationship.

rich Feb 24, 2017 10:31am

truly a great pm

if only, he had more power over security and foreign affairs

Good Point Feb 24, 2017 10:35am

@Muslim Medina Yes certainly, India also wants friendly relationship as it can focus more on growth. With some recent actions in Pakistan, I see hope.

HD Feb 24, 2017 10:42am

Sir Everyone in India knows about it ! Let something positive take place !

Dr. Khan Feb 24, 2017 10:46am

Pakistan is currently sitting on a dividend which occurs once in several centuries.

Pakistan’s working-age population (15-64 years) reached 52% in 1990s and is currently around 60.4% creating a huge demographic dividend. The share of the working-age population is expected to peak at 68% around 2045 and then start declining. The once in a lifetime window for Pakistan is between 1990 and 2045. Of these 55 years, 25 have already passed. 3.1 million persons are expected to enter Pakistan’s labor force every year over the next 30 years. We need sustained GDP growth of over 7% to generate employment but its around 4% now.

Agriculture alone CANNOT absorb this growing labor force as it is in disarray.This inability of our economy is due to insufficient investment in education over decades.This unused opportunity would lead to massive unemployment resulting in anger and violence. It can then pose a threat to law and order including terrorism. It would also put huge pressures on food, water.

asad Feb 24, 2017 10:48am

@Rahim proud Indian kashmiri muslims in gujrat, kashmir and across india are with pakistan after ongoing genocide in kashmir and previously in Gujrat.

bALAKRISHNAN kamesh KAMESH Feb 24, 2017 11:13am

When India and Pakistan understand each other and become friends TERRORISM will vanish and the economies will prosper...!!

SNB Feb 24, 2017 11:42am

@asad what's your advice for them?

True story Feb 24, 2017 12:08pm

Old news with same comment from Nawaz.

kruschev Feb 24, 2017 12:28pm

Now he is toying the line of PM Modi. But Sharif must first act on terror groups operating against neighbouring countries, from within Pakistan.

saagar Feb 24, 2017 12:40pm

Tell me the name of a leader in last 70 years,on both sides of border, who has not said the same thing publicly. But fears and aspirations demanded that they support violence and separatist movements in each other's country. This resulted in death of thousands, unnecessary wars and huge military spending curtailing budgets for health and education. Unless the leadership thinks rationally and not emotionally, no peace will come to common man's life.Let us put humanity first and everything else below it, then only peace and prosperity will prevail.

Khan Feb 24, 2017 12:43pm

@Kabeela Khan No, I say even with the alleged corruption, he is still better than the rest.

dost Feb 24, 2017 12:43pm

Apart friendship there is no other option if we want to give better place and live to our citizens, arms and wars will never can solve any disputes rather demolish everything. So come on put on dispute to back burner and talk how we can together grow rest will be automatically solved by time

vishwanath Feb 24, 2017 12:48pm

@Dr. Khan Doctor you are right, but during 25 years what has been fed in to the mind of Pakistani youth is yielding the outcomes, so I believe even remaining years will passout without any result if the mindset and curriculum remains in the similar method

Parvez Feb 24, 2017 12:51pm

Our leaders, all of them, have the habit of loudly claiming ' Pakistan comes first '....but actually look after their own personal interests first.

Zealot Feb 24, 2017 01:17pm

This man is talking to Turkey and Mentioning india instead of Turkey for friendship ties.....


common & immaterial Feb 24, 2017 03:14pm

@Dr. Khan ... spot on. Heartening to see such practical observations. Why are we growing (india & pakistan) faster than developed nations? all of sudden we've became more intelligent...? NO... These days we've majority of population contributing to economy (earning) unlike developed countries who have majority of populations not earning (leaving on pension or retired. To an extent this is because of better life expectancy in those countries where people normally live longer) More people working, will give more prosperity. And this is the time when we'll have to earn for future also. Improving healthcare will decrease death rate which is good but another aspect of it is there will be more people consuming compare to number of those producing.. Developed nations understood this & concentrated on wealth generating while on peak & that is why they can still be comfortable with GDP growth rate around 1%. I don't know where we'll stand 30 years down the line, provided we survive that longer

JKhan Feb 24, 2017 05:25pm

@Pankaj because you have made an investment.

Jamil Feb 24, 2017 06:36pm

@bALAKRISHNAN kamesh KAMESH Exactly! For that to happen, the problem of Kashmir has got to be resolved amicably and according to the wishes of the people of Kashmir. Therefore the key to peace and prosperity in the region is the settlement of the Kashmir dispute on a priority basis.