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HomePakistanPM meets Iranian president on UNGA sidelines | The Express Tribune

PM meets Iranian president on UNGA sidelines | The Express Tribune


Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar on Tuesday held a bilateral meeting with the Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi on the sidelines of the 78th Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) in New York.

Underscoring the close fraternal relations between the two neighbouring countries, the prime minister reaffirmed Pakistan’s strong commitment to further strengthen and deepen these ties, with a particular focus on enhancing cooperation in the economic domain.

PM Kakar stressed that steps including the recent inauguration of the Mand-Border border marketplace, would not only contribute to the economic uplift of the border areas but also serve as a tangible manifestation of the collective commitment to work for the betterment of the two peoples.

Noting that President Raisi’s policy of ‘Neighbourhood First’ was fully aligned with Pakistan’s vision for regional development and connectivity, the interim premier stressed the importance for both countries to leverage their unique geographical location to promote shared objectives of regional peace and prosperity, through greater trade and enhanced regional connectivity.

Pakistan-Iran relations are characterised by regular high-level exchanges, commonality of views on important regional and global issues and strengthened cooperation in all areas of mutual interest.

PM attends UNGA opening session

PM Kakar attended the opening session of the UNGA at the UN headquarters in New York on Tuesday.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres inaugurated the 78th session of the UNGA, on the theme of “Rebuilding trust and reigniting global solidarity: Accelerating action on the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals towards peace, prosperity, progress and sustainability for all.”.

Kakar is on a five-day visit to the US. He will address the UNGA on Friday. Besides, he would meet Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and attend a reception hosted by US President Joe Biden in the honour of the global leaders.

The prime minister will represent Pakistan at the high-level moot on Global Development Initiative and address the participants. Prime Minister Kakar will also address a high-level meeting on Sustainable Development Goals. He will also interact with the international media in New York.

Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Ambassador Munir Akram said that the 78th UNGA session would help Pakistan present its viewpoint on the core world issues, including the Kashmir issue, Afghan crisis, Islamophobia, Middle East tensions, environment and economy.

“This is critical time in world’s history as tensions have increased in Asia among big powers and due to Covid and climate change the economic situation of Asian states has worsened. As a developing country, our focus at this world forum will be to ensure financial commitments from northern countries for the developing states, which are facing climate impacts,” Akram said.

The ambassador said that the presence of Prime Minister Kakar at this world forum and his meetings with the business community would help attract foreign investment into Pakistan. “We will reaffirm our longstanding position on Kashmir that it should be resolved on the basis of UN Security Council’s resolutions.”

Regarding the recent G-20 Summit in India, he clarified that the suggestion for a new corridor did not represent a collective proposal of the entire G-20 but rather stemmed from a few individual states. He went on to emphasize that unlike this proposition, China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is actively in the implementation phase, and therefore, the suggested corridor cannot be regarded as a parallel project.

Read also: PM Kakar attends 78th UNGA opening session

On the sidelines of the UNGA, Caretaker Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani, who is accompanying the prime minister, met with his counterparts from Denmark, Netherlands and Norway and discussed with them the bilateral and regional matters.

During the talks with Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt of Norway, both sides agreed to work towards the enhancement of bilateral cooperation. They also emphasized the importance of multilateralism and a rule-based approach to address regional and global challenges.

Meanwhile, Pakistan and Denmark agreed to implementing the Green Framework Engagement agreement through a joint action plan during the meeting between Jilani and Foreign Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen.

Jilani thanked the Danish government for their support for the flood victims. While highlighting the rise in Islamophobia in Europe, Jilani welcomed Oslo’s decision to propose a bill that would outlaw the desecration of the religious texts.

Jilani also held a meeting with Foreign Minister Hanke Bruins Slot of the Netherlands and discussed cooperation in trade, investment, and agriculture. The two sides resolved to further strengthen cooperation in the areas of dairy, water management, and information technology (IT).

Jilani appreciated the continuous support to Pakistan by the Netherlands at the European Union (EU) for the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP)-Plus status. They agreed to further strengthen the relations in all areas of mutual interest at bilateral and multilateral levels.

Expressing concerns over the rise in Islamophobic incidents in some European countries, Jilani emphasised that such abhorrent actions “cannot be justified under the garb of freedom of speech”. He urged his Dutch counterpart to take effective measures to prevent Islamophobic acts in the future.

With input from Agencies

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