Pakistan eyes new horizons with Russia


ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan and Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi had “high-level meetings” with Russia President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, respectively, on the sidelines of SCO summit in Bishkek.

According to a statement by the foreign minister on microblogging site, he said both sides had a frank exchange on issues of regional interest and concerns.

Shah Mehmood Qureshi said Pakistan conveyed that it was interested in building synergies with Russia and chart new frontiers of cooperation and engagement.

Meanwhile, Foreign Office in a press statement said the Prime Minister’s engagement with world leaders, including President Xi Jinping and President Vladimir Putin, lent further momentum to Pakistan’s all-weather strategic cooperative partnership with China and to the growth of Pakistan’s multi-dimensional ties with Russia.

It said PM Imran’s comprehensive statement at 19th Meeting of the Council of the Heads of State of Shanghai Cooperation Organization Member States underscored Pakistan’s commitment to contribute substantially to the advancement of SCO’s goals and objectives in the political, security and economic spheres.

On Friday, the Pakistani PM addressed the summit, where he talks about the need to boost regional trade as well as ending dependence on West.

She urged the member states of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) to finalise arrangements for trade in local currencies and set up SCO Fund and SCO Development Bank to catalyse the trans-regional development agenda.

He was presenting his eight-pronged course of action for SCO in the light chaotic international politics.

The prime minister had said the SCO should reinforce its vision of cooperation, that rejects confrontation, and advance the imperatives of peaceful co-existence at the regional and international levels.

He had said the SCO member states should galvanise the “Shanghai Spirit” to strengthen the organisation’s core mandate of mitigating the risks of conflict, fostering confidence, and promoting stability.