NEW YORK: Prime Minister Imran Khan in a meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Thursday highlighted the human rights abuses in India-occupied Kashmir and underscored that these actions and India’s belligerent rhetoric and aggressive posture continued to pose a grave risk to regional peace and security.
The Russian foreign minister had called on the premier on the sidelines of the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). During the meeting, the prime minister said that the international community should take serious cognisance of the situation in occupied Kashmir as well as the region.
According to a press release issued by the Foreign Office (FO), Prime Minister Imran stressed the importance attached in Pakistan’s foreign policy to “a qualitatively new relationship” with Russia.
The premier noted that Pakistan and Russia had maintained close contact following India’s unilateral and illegal action to revoke occupied Kashmir’s special autonomy on August 5.
He emphasised that the Kashmiri population under Indian occupation had been locked down for over 53 days and the international community must urge India to lift curfew and other restrictions and also play its role in the just resolution of the Kashmir dispute.
Russia is the president of the UN Security Council for the current month.
The two sides also exchanged views on the Afghan peace process, with Prime Minister Imran reiterating that there is no military solution to the conflict in Afghanistan. He emphasised that the stalled peace process must be resumed at the earliest to advance the objectives of a peaceful and stable Afghanistan.
The premier expressed satisfaction at the steady growth of bilateral cooperation in diverse areas including political, trade, energy, investment, security and defence fields.
During the meeting, the prime minister recalled his interaction with Russian President Putin on the sidelines of SCO Council of Heads of State in Bishkek on June 13 and extensive exchange of views on bilateral as well as regional and international issues.
PM Imran reiterated his invitation to President Putin to visit Pakistan. The premier also underscored the importance of both sides consulting each other on all issues of common interest.