Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi held a telephonic conversation with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Matters of mutual interest, including the Covid-19 pandemic, cooperation at the multilateral fora, prospects of enhanced bilateral cooperation, and regional issues were discussed. Foreign Minister Qureshi underlined that Pakistan considered Russia an important partner and desired to forge a long-term and multi-dimensional partnership with Russia.

 

Foreign Minister Qureshi offered condolences on the loss of precious lives in Russia due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The two Foreign Ministers exchanged views about the socio-economic ramifications about the pandemic. Foreign Minister Lavrov expressed solidarity with Pakistan in its efforts to combat the outbreak.

 

The Foreign Minister apprised his Russian counterpart of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s call for “Global Initiative on Debt Relief” for developing countries. He stated that coordinated and comprehensive actions were essential to create fiscal space needed by the developing world to deal with the socio-economic impacts of Covid-19. The Russian Foreign Minister expressed support for debt relief initiative and assured to play a positive role.

 

In context of IOJ&K, Foreign Minister Qureshi shared deep concern over the continuing double lockdown as well as the intensification of military crackdown by Indian occupation forces and attempts to change the demographic structure of the occupied territory. The Foreign Minister underlined the importance of urgent steps to address the grave situation.

 

The two Foreign Ministers also discussed the situation in Afghanistan in the context of the recent positive developments. Foreign Minister Qureshi reaffirmed Pakistan’s support for an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process and underlined Pakistan’s positive contribution to the U.S.-Taliban peace agreement. He stressed the importance of inclusive intra-Afghan negotiations as the only way to build durable peace and security in the country. The two Foreign Ministers agreed on maintaining close consultations as part of regional efforts to support the Afghan peace process.

 

The two Foreign Ministers agreed to remain in close contact to take forward the important bilateral agenda and close cooperation in the regional context.

 

 

Islamabad

18 June 2020

255/2020
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