Zarif meets PM, COAS and FM, reviews regional peace with them

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RAWALPINDI: Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in a meeting with Chief of the Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, here at GHQ, Friday. - ISPR photo

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif met on Friday to discuss bilateral ties and regional issues.
The two sides discussed ways to expand bilateral ties in different areas, especially in energy sector and regional issues.
Iranian FM is visiting Pakistan to discuss issues of mutual interest with Pakistani officials including the regional developments.
Earlier Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif had also met with his Pakistani counterpart Shah Mehmood Qureshi and Pakistan Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa and discussed bilateral ties.
In April this year, Prime Minister Imran Khan paid his first official visit to Iran and during the visit the two sides agreed to continue cooperation on bilateral matters.
It is pertinent to mention that this is Zarif’s tenth visit to Pakistan since he became Iranian foreign minister in 2013.
About a week ago, Zarif visited Turkmenistan, India, Japan and China and held talks with top officials of the four Asian countries on the US measures to create tension in the region and Iranian commitment to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action endorsed by the UN Security Council Resolution 2231.
Meanwhile, Foreign Minister of Iran Mohammad Javad Zarif on Friday met with Pakistan Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa and discussed matters of mutual interests and regional developments.
General Qamar Javed Bajwa had also visited Iran in November 2017 year and met with Iranian leaders to further enhance coordination between the two countries, especially in the defense sector.
Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi Friday held talks with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif in Islamabad and called for dialogue to reduce the growing tension between the United States and Iran.
Qureshi was speaking at delegation level talks with the Iranian Foreign Minister, who arrived in Pakistan late Thursday on two-day visit to seek Pakistan’s cooperation to reduce tension in the Middle East.
“Tension in the region is in no one’s interest,” the Pakistani Foreign Minister said during the talks, according to Qureshi’s office.
The United States has increased its military buildup in the region recently by deploying an aircraft carrier, bombers and anti-missile systems there, citing a threat of Iranian attack.
Rising tension between the two countries has put them on the brink of military clashes. Both countries; however, say they do not want war.
Qureshi told his Iranian counterpart that Pakistan will continue its reconciliatory efforts for ensuring peace and stability and reducing tension in the region.
“Pakistan wants resolution of all outstanding issues through diplomatic engagement,” he said, adding all the stakeholders need to demonstrate patience and tolerance.
The Iranian Foreign Minister said his country gives value to Pakistan’s efforts for establishing peace in the region, according to Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry.
Expressing satisfaction over implementation on the decisions made during Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to Iran in April the two sides agreed to continue cooperation on bilateral matters.
Pakistan Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad Faisal has the Iranian Foreign Minister will hold talks with his Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Friday.
“We believe the situation in the region is serious and needs to be addressed through dialogue by all parties. We expect all sides to show restraint, as any miscalculated move, can transmute into a large-scale conflict,” Faisal said at his weekly briefing on Thursday.
He said Pakistan always supports dialogue and desires that all issues should be settled peacefully and through engagement by all sides.
“If required, Pakistan is ready to play a constructive and positive role in this regard,” the Pakistani spokesman said.
“Our position is very clear in this regard. Pakistan supports dialogue in all situations. If there is any problem, it should be resolved through peaceful dialogue and negotiations,” Faisal said when asked about Iran-U.S. tension.
The Iranian Foreign Minister is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Khan, Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaisar and Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa later on Friday, a Foreign Ministry official said.
Iran has been under unprecedented sanction pressures from Washington since U.S. President Donald Trump’s unilateral withdrawal from the 2015 Iranian nuclear deal in May last year.
The United States has mounted pressure on Iran, by designating Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps as a terror group, imposing a total ban on Iranian oil exports, and building up its military presence in the Gulf.
U.S. President Donald Trump made a fresh threat against Iran in a tweet Sunday, deviating from his fairly reserved tone days ago.
“If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran,” Trump tweeted on May 19. The president’s recent tweet is seen as an escalation of his tough stance on Iran. – NN