Tehran, Islamabad agree to boost border security after terror attack

Pakistan, Iran to revive hotline between border forces

May 3, 2017 - 21:55

Pakistan and Iran reached an agreement Wednesday to strengthen security along their shared border after terrorists killed nine Iranian border guards last week.

According to a statement issued by the Pakistani Interior Ministry, both sides agreed to bolster border security through "better coordination, greater intelligence sharing and frequent interactions" among political and security officials. They also agreed in principle to revive a hotline between their border forces to coordinate activities, it said.

The agreement followed a visit by Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Wednesday to Islamabad for talks with Pakistani leadership.

In meetings with Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, the foreign minister insisted it is necessary to bring the perpetrators of the terrorist attack to book.

The soldiers were killed on April 27 with long-range guns shot from inside Pakistan. The ambush happened at the Pakistani border’s zero-point, near the Iranian town of Mirjaveh in the border province of Sistan-Baluchestan.

Sharif expressed condolences over the killing of Iranian guards. His office said Sharif and Zarif also discussed issues of peace and stability in the region.

Zarif also held talks with Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa. Both sides agreed on improving border coordination to deny any space to the terrorists.

 ‘Iran-Pakistan ties rooted in common faith, history’ 

During the meeting, the interior minister said Pakistan-Iran relations are rooted in common faith, history, and geography, Geo News reported.

Calling Iran a fraternal country, Nisar assured Zarif that no hurdle will be allowed to come in the way of better relations between the two countries.

Zarif said his country attaches great importance to its relations with Pakistan. The foreign minister said that Iran believes in the unity of Muslim countries and stressed the importance of both Pakistan and Iran working together for resolution of problems faced by the Islamic world.

Zarif noted that the two countries also need to move forward with consensus on matters of international importance.

The foreign minister was accompanied by a high-level delegation including military and security offcials. He also held talks with Advisor on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz.

NA/PA

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