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Pakistan, Iran for more coordination in fighting terrorism

13 September, 2011

TEHRAN: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad talks to Pakistani Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani in their meeting at the Iranian presidency office,
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TEHRAN: Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Monday called for greater coordination in fighting terrorism.

"Combating terrorism requires unity and coordination between governments and nations," Ahmadinejad said during the meeting, adding "Enemies of our nations and regional countries seek to spread insecurity and create obstacles in the way of our development."

Gilani said Tehran and Islamabad can "take effective steps in combating terrorism through close cooperation and coordination." He also vowed that "Pakistan will never allow others to harm bilateral relations" with Iran.

The prime minister disclosed that the two committees, one jointly headed by the foreign ministers and the other Security Committee headed by interior ministers of the two countries, will deliberate upon issues on regular basis with a view to making their borders safer and boosting the economic activities and trade between the two countries.

The prime minister said that the Iranian interior minister would visit Pakistan and he would hold discussions with his counterpart in Islamabad in the context of his instructions that Iranian government's concerns on the borders of Balochistan, Sistan must be addressed to their satisfaction.

In June, Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan agreed to jointly fight militancy at a counter-terrorism summit in Tehran attended by their respective heads of state. Iran and Pakistan in recent months have worked to boost bilateral relations, with officials from both countries regularly paying exchange visits.

President Asif Ali Zardari visited Tehran in July, his second in two months, as the two neighbours vowed to expand cooperation in all fields. Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi also paid a two-day visit to Islamabad last week, discussing political and economic issues with Pakistani officials.

Moreover, Gilani held an exclusive and a delegation-level meeting with First Vice-President of Iran Mohammad Reza Rahimi, during which they agreed to expedite the gas pipeline and 1000 MW electricity projects.

The prime minister proposed the frequent interior ministers meetings of the both the countries to sort out security-related issues. Iran said it would soon convey its decision regarding the setting up of consulate by Pakistan in Bandar Abbas and opening of a cultural centre in Tehran.

Both sides emphasised for enhanced people to people contacts, while Iran expressed its desire to enhance bilateral relations and agreed to declare Multan and Gilan as sister cities. Gilani thanked Iran for providing 100 million dollars for the flood-affected people.


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