Still assessing implications of new US sanctions on Iran: FO spokesperson


ISLAMABAD: Foreign Office Spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal in response to a question about the re-imposition of sanctions on Iran by the US Administration said, “We are examining the implications of the US re-imposition of sanctions on Iran.”

“However, Pakistan, being a sovereign state, reserves the right to pursue legitimate economic and commercial interests while respecting the international legal regime” he added.

To another question, the spokesperson said in line with its consistent policy, Pakistan is willing to make all efforts for an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process.

In response to a question about Pak-Russia ties, he said, “Our defence relations have grown steadily over the years and both countries have established regular military-to-military contacts.”

“Pakistan and Russia have been successful in developing a strong partnership, which is based on mutual trust, commonality of interests and convergence of views on important global and regional issues,” he maintained.

The spokesperson said Pakistan and Russia had been able to construct a positive trajectory in sustaining high-level interactions and exploring new avenues to cement bilateral relations in all spheres including the defence sector.

“The two countries have held two editions of the joint military exercise named ‘DRUZBA’ (Friendship) in Pakistan in 2016 and in Russia in 2017. Both countries also held counter-narcotics naval exercise called “Arabian Monsoon” in the Arabian Sea in 2014 and 2015,” he added.

He informed that a Russian warship participated in the multilateral naval exercise AMAN-2017 from February 10-`14, 2017 and PNS Aslat visited Saint Petersburg and participated in Russia’s Navy Day celebrations on July 29, 2018.

About the appointment of Pakistan’s current ambassador to the US, Ali Jehangir Siddiqui, Foreign Office spokesperson said, “According to their contract, non-career ambassadors are deemed to have resigned, unless the new government decides otherwise.”

When asked as to what was Pakistan’s stance regarding the serious problems that had arisen between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Canada over the alleged interference in the internal matters of the Kingdom, he said, “Pakistan has always supported the sovereignty and non-interference in internal affairs of other states. Both of these aspects are enshrined in the UN Charter and are among the basic tenets of international law, and the foundation of peaceful and friendly inter-state relations.”

“Pakistan supports the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia protecting its sovereignty, as a matter of principle and the historic brotherly relations between our two countries,” he added.

To a question about the situation in Syria, the spokesperson said, “We have consistently stressed the need for dialogue and peace in Syria and an immediate end to all human sufferings.”

When asked, if foreign dignitaries were invited for August 14 celebrations, he said, “No foreign dignitary has been invited for the Independence Day.”