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Pakistan wants close ties with Russia :PM Gilani

31 May, 2012

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ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani said that Pakistan is keen to promote cooperation with Russia in defence, energy, narcotics control, and trade sectors He was speaking to Ambassador Zamir N. Kabulov, Russian President's Special Envoy on Afghanistan, who called on him at PM's House here Wednesday.

He said that enormous commonalities existed between Pakistan and Russia on regional issues and bilateral cooperation.

The Ambassador said that Vladmir Putin, President of Russia, looked forward to a productive visit to Pakistan and discussions with the Pakistani leadership on a wide range of issues. He said that visit of the Russian President would be instrumental in further enhancing bilateral and multifaceted cooperation between both countries.

The Prime Minister recalled his meeting with Mr. Vladmir Putin on the sidelines of SCO in which he offered cooperation and assistance for up-gradation of Pakistan Steel Mills in Karachi.

The Prime Minister said that Pakistan considered Russia as a source of stability and peace both at the regional and global levels.

He underscored the importance of frequent exchanges at highest level including that of Foreign Ministers of both count ries to strengthen bilateral cooperation as there is convergence of views between both countries on almost all issues.

Gilani said that he was looking forward to President Putin's visit to Pakistan, adding that the visit would help further deepen and broaden the bilateral relations.

He said that Pakistan welcomed Russian interest in the Iran-Pakistan Pipeline Project as two sides have had very good meetings on the project and some specific proposals had been discussed in this regard.

Gilani said that Pakistan also welcomed Russia's interest in trans-regional energy projects such as CASA-1000 and TAPI.

The Prime Minister added that President Zardari was looking forwad to his meeting with President Putin on the sidelines of the SCO Summit (June 6-7 2012).

The Prime Minister said that Pakistan had made consistent and serious efforts to improve relations with Afghanistan as stability and peace in Afghanistan were important for stability and peace in Pakistan.

He mentioned that on President Karzai's request, he issued a public appeal on the 24th of February to all militant groups to negotiate with the Afghan government.

The meeting of Trilateral Core Group consisting of Pakistan, Afghanistan and the US, which was held last month, yielded positive outcomes, he added.

The Prime Minister also appreciated Russia for its full support to Pakistan in its endevours to become full member of the SCO.

End.

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