Iranian FM Meets Pakistan’s New Premier, Counterpart

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif held separate talks with Pakistan's new Prime Minister Imran Khan and Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on a range of issues, including ways to boost the bilateral relations between the two neighboring countries.

Speaking at the meeting with Qureshi in Islamabad on Friday, Zarif hailed Pakistan as “an important neighbor” of Iran and said the Islamic Republic sees no restriction on the development of ties with the country.

No third country can undermine Tehran-Islamabad relations, he said, stressing the need to boost cooperation in diverse fields, including the security of common borders, trade and banking cooperation.

Zarif also met with former cricket legend Imran Khan, who has recently been sworn in as the new Pakistani premier, and the country’s Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa.

The Iranian top diplomat arrived in Islamabad on Thursday for a two-day visit.

According to Pakistani Foreign Office Spokesman Muhammad Faisal, Zarif is “the first foreign dignitary to visit Pakistan since the new government took over”.

Imran Khan was sworn in at a ceremony in Islamabad on August 18, officially taking over the reins of power in the country after his party won a July 25 election.

In a message to the former Pakistani cricketer in early August, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani congratulated Imran Khan on his party’s win in the general election, calling for stronger relations between the two neighbors, which he said are the “strategic depth” of one another.

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