TEHRAN, Jun. 09 – In a meeting with his Pakistani counterpart Mamnoon Hussain Sat., Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that Iran welcomes expansion of defense cooperation between the two countries, stressing that common borders should be secure.The meeting was held at President Rouhani’s residence in Qingdao, China’s eastern Shandong province, as the president is there to take part at the 18th Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit.
“As long as the terrorists are active, the region will not achieve its development goals,” said Rouhani adding, “fighting terrorism requires full cooperation and coordination among all countries of the region.”
Highlighting the importance of maintaining regional stability and security, he added, “we want to see a secure and stable Afghanistan, and the coordination of Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan is very important for the security and development of the region.”
Vowing to boost bilateral economic ties, Iranian president said, “Iran is ready to have mutual investment with Pakistan in various fields.”
Calling for improving banking relations between the two countries, he went on to say that Iran can be a reliable source for supplying Pakistan’s energy.
Rouhani also expressed happiness over Pakistan‘s membership in SCO and said that Iran supports Islamabad’s effective role in the organization.
Touching on the close stance of Iran and Pakistan regarding the issues of the region and Islamic World, he said, “at regional and international meetings, including the recent summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Iran and Pakistan have had close stances in condemning the relocation of US embassy to the Holy Quds as well as the demonstrations in the two countries in support of Palestine on Quds Day.”
Elsewhere in his remarks, Rouhani refereed to recent IAEA reports, saying, “Iran has lived up to its commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and the unilateral actions of the US government in exiting the deal is against the norm of international relations and UNSC resolution, to which the global community should respond.”
Mamnoon Hussain, for his part, pointed to the deep cultural and historical co-existence of the two Iranian and Pakistani nations, emphasizing that Pakistan, as a friend and neighbor country, will always stand with Iran, and that Islamabad is determined to develop relations in all fields of mutual interest.
“We need to work together and utilize all the capacities to further increase trade between the two countries by eliminating all barriers, including tariff barriers,” he added.
Reiterating the support of Pakistan for Iran’s full membership in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, he said, “we praise Iran’s positive role as an observer member to the SCO, and we hope that Iran will join the permanent members of this organization as soon as possible.”
The Pakistani president also praised regional cooperation between Iran and Pakistan, saying that peace and stability in Afghanistan is important for both neighboring countries, adding, “border cooperation between the two countries has been enhanced in recent years, and this trend must persist.”
Elsewhere in his remarks, Hussain highlighted the need to solve crises peacefully and through negotiation, adding, “Pakistan supports the JCPOA and urges all parties to abide by it.