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Mottaki: Pakistan and Iran are part of a single body

TEHRAN (APP) – Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will soon visit Pakistan to develop a joint action plan for further boosting bilateral ties and strengthening tripartite contracts with Afghanistan on security issues, Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki has told a visiting Pakistani media delegation.

“We are in consultation through diplomatic channels to finalize dates of the visit,” Mottaki said. This will be the first-ever visit of President Ahmadinejad, since he assumed the office.

The visit would be a bilateral event or part of trilateral conference between Pakistan, Iran and Afghanistan, Mottaki explained.

During the last two years, their bilateral relationship received tremendous boost in all sectors of bilateral interest, he said hoping the forthcoming visit of President Ahmadinejad will further consolidate their deep-rooted historical and cultural relationship.

Mottaki said that Pakistan and Iran are part of a single body. Condemning Zionist anti-Islamic policies world over, he said inimical forces, particularly Israel are bent upon to divide and harm us. But, he said they will never succeed.

Brushing aside impression of any conflict between the two neighboring countries, Iranian Foreign Minister stated that they have been maintaining close contacts to adopt common position on regional and international issues.” Both sides attach high importance to expanding their socio-economic partnership, through projects like Gas pipeline. “We are good neighbors and sincere friends and our common border is a border of friendship and peace” he remarked.

Reiterating firm resolve of his country keeping their relations free-of-tension, Mottaki said, their relations are not against any third party, and his country will never allow third country to affect its relations with Pakistan.

Clarifying his country’s position on nuclear issue, the Iranian Foreign Minister said, “We don’t believe in nuclear bomb. Time for nuclear bomb is over. It is only a source of destruction. West in fact, he contended is afraid of unity and strong leadership of the Iranian nation.

“Our nuclear program is purely for peaceful purposes, we are signatory of NPT and are fully adhering to the laid-down conditions of IAEA,” he added. There is no reason of targeting Iran on issue of its peaceful nuclear program.

Firmly opposing presence of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, Mottaki said it has proved counter-productive. Terrorism, crimes and production of illicit drugs in Afghanistan are on rise, and the foreign forces have failed to restore rule of law in the war-torn country.

Terrorism is a serious issue, but Iranian Foreign Minister stressed that it could be tackled only through a regional strategy. The leaders of Pakistan and Iran have already agreed for a trilateral conference for promoting sustainable peace, stability and security in Afghanistan. The conference is likely to take place in Islamabad in the near future.

The three countries have signed a Joint Islamabad Declaration envisaging road map for future interaction in security and other fields of common interest. They have agreed on strategy which called for a regional rather than foreign solution to the Afghan conflict.

They have also agreed to look into the possibilities of evolving regional approach to the some of the challenges facing the region including illicit weapons, drug money and financing of militancy through narco-money.

About bilateral cooperation, the foreign minister further said they are agreed to strengthen bilateral ties in diverse spheres, especially infrastructure connectivity and collaboration in the field of energy.

Earlier, welcoming the media delegation, the Iranian Foreign Minister hoped such media inter-exchanges will help further promoting harmony and better understanding among the people of the two countries.

The delegation included Muhammad Afzal Butt President National Press Club, Hamid Mir senior anchorperson of Geo TV, Mir, Siddiq Baluch, Editor Balochistan Express, Syed Ayaz Badshah Chief Editor Daily Mashriq, Mian Shahid Nadeem Producer Nawa-i-Waqat TV, Imran Shahid Anchorperson Express TV, Amir Latif, Bueau Chief Online Karachi and Javed Akhtar Director News, APP.

During its three-day stay in Tehran, the delegation also had separate meetings with Deputy Foreign Minster Muhammad Ali Fathollahi and Deputy President Iran Supreme Council for National Security Ali Baqeri.

It also met Deputy Minister for culture and Media Affairs Mohammad Ali Ramin. The two sides discussed various proposals for cooperation in media sector. It was agreed that National Press Club and its Iranian counterpart will enter into an agreement for promoting collaboration and interaction among the media persons of the two countries.


 

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