In phone call with Iran's Raisi, PM Shehbaz appreciates support on Kashmir

Published July 10, 2022
<p>A combination photo of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi (L) and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif (R). —  Reuters/AFP</p>

A combination photo of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi (L) and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif (R). — Reuters/AFP

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif held a telephone call with Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi on Sunday and appreciated Tehran and the supreme leader's "steadfast support" to Pakistan on the Kashmir issue.

During the conversation, the two leader also exchanged Eid greetings and views on bilateral ties.

For his part, PM Shehbaz underscored the significance of "historic ties" between Pakistan and Iran, which he said were defined by "geographic proximity, shared history and mutual understanding".

The PM reaffirmed his government's "strong commitment" to boost bilateral ties with Iran in all areas of mutual cooperation, including trade, energy, electricity and people-to-people contact.

He conveyed to the Iranian president that the early convening of a joint economic commission between Pakistan and Iran would further "strengthen economic linkages between the two countries".

PM Shehbaz further expressed the hope that border sustenance markets along Pakistan-Iran frontiers would soon become operational — a development that he said would "facilitate livelihood in the border region".

The premier also expressed gratitude to the Iranian leadership for " extending timely support and lending IL-76 aircraft to Pakistan" for extinguishing forest fires in Balochistan in May.

He also appreciated Iran's cooperation with regards to facilitating Pakistani pilgrims every year and emphasised the importance of further "enhancing people-to-people exchanges".

In return, President Raisi thanked PM Shehbaz for his Eid felicitations and assured him of Iranian cooperation for further "intensifying bilateral trade", particularly with regards to the provision of electricity to Balochistan's Makran division.

Both the dignitaries also invited each other to visit one another's countries.

The Iranian state news agency IRNA quoted Raisi as saying: "The Islamic Republic of Iran emphasizes great importance to its relations with Pakistan."

Raisi in the telephone conversation added that the "current level of Tehran-Islamabad relations is not proportionate to the diverse capacities of the two countries", and that "Iran is ready to expand bilateral relations, especially in energy and agricultural fields".

"The regular holding of the joint commission for economic cooperation will pave the way for boosting the level of relations between the two countries," said the Iranian President, pointing out that there is "no obstacle to expanding ties between the Islamic Republic of Iran and Pakistan".

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