Historic Visit of Iranian President to Pakistan & US By M Abdullah Hamid Gul

Historic Visit of Iranian President to Pakistan & US By M Abdullah Hamid Gul

THE visit of Iranian President Dr Syed Ibrahim Raisi to Pakistan is of great importance, while keeping several events in mind such as, Zionist brutality in Palestine, the Iranian aerial attack on Israel, the tense situation in the region, and the ongoing terrorism in Iran and Pakistan from the Afghan soil. Europe and the United States are determined to isolate Iran. A week before the visit to Pakistan, the US was shocked by Iran’s air attack on Israel, despite this, Pakistan warmly welcomed the president of the Islamic Republic of Iran; completely rejected the pressure of the IMF and US sanctions. When most of the countries in the region were showing reluctance to take an open position with Iran, Pakistan supported the Iranian position and did not back down from its diplomatic support. The special feature of this visit is that the distinguished guests were not limited to Islamabad, apart from meeting the Pakistani leadership, the Iranian President also visited the tomb of Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan, in Karachi and Allama Muhammad Iqbal in Lahore.

Iranians have great respect for the founder of Pakistan Muhammad Ali Jinnah and poet thinker Allama Muhammad Iqbal. Such visit to Lahore and Karachi was a part of Iranian public diplomacy, which is a high proof of love for Pakistanis apart from official contacts. Last year Iranian President went to Balochistan. Iran and Pakistan, which were not far apart before, have become closer after the recent visit. All the heinous conspiracies of the United States to separate the brotherly countries from each other have failed. Moreover, the awarding of an honorary doctorate degree to the Iranian president by Karachi University is an acknowledgment of his academic and educational services. In this regard, the opening of the book by First Lady Dr. Jameela Alamul Hadi reflects the inherent devotion of Pakistanis to Persian culture. In fact, Pakistan has told the world that these two neighbouring Islamic brotherly countries are one and the same.

Apart from the same position regarding Palestine and Kashmir, heads of both countries signed 8 agreements and understandings to promote cooperation in various fields including security, trade, science and technology, veterinary health, culture and judicial affairs. MoUs were signed and bilateral trade agreements worth 10 billion dollars were signed without any external pressure, which is welcomed and will have a great positive impact on the region. The current bilateral trade between the two countries is about $2 billion annually. If this trade is done through the local currencies, then the pressure regarding dollar in the country will decrease, resulting in a stable rupee. Under these agreements, Iran will provide electricity, gas and oil to Pakistan at relatively cheap prices, as a result of which our products will also become cheaper. Pakistan will also export dairy products, commodities and agricultural machinery to Iran.

Now we should implement these agreements without any external pressure to develop the country and strengthen the relationship between the two countries. This visit is also important because Pakistan has recently restored the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline. What has it decided to do even if it has to face US sanctions for it? The Pakistan Gas Pipeline, which Pakistan has finally given permission to build its 80 km section, is expected to meet 35 percent of its energy needs. This will help alleviate the energy crisis and save billions of rupees in oil import bills. Importantly, ratification of security cooperation agreements and counter-terrorism cooperation will address broader security concerns of both states and strengthen regional security. The said agreement and commitment to enhance mutual security will be beneficial for both countries and the region at large, which are facing a growing trend of terrorism and their territory being used against each other. The friendly diplomatic, trade and people-to-people relations between Pakistan and Iran, dedicated to the spirit of brotherhood, span more than seven decades.

The depth of Pakistan-Iran relations can be gauged from the fact that in 1948, Iran was the first country to recognize Pakistan, while after the Islamic Revolution in Iran in 1979, Pakistan was the first country to become under the patronage of the founder of the revolution, Imam Khomeini, recognized the Wali government and this historic step formed the basis of a strong, ‘sustainable’ and unbreakable relationship that even the enemy could not crack this iron friendship. In 2012, when the foundation of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project was laid, India started trying to make a dent in Pakistan’s relations with China as well as with Iran. India’s encouragement of Iran to support Chabahar port in comparison to Gwadar port was a link of the same conspiracy. Indian “RAW” is active from Iran’s Sistan and Balochistan province to Pakistan’s Balochistan and its trained terrorists have been found involved in terrorist activities in Pakistan and Iran. After the arrest of Kulbhushan Yadav, some misunderstandings also arose between the two countries, but they were immediately resolved by making progress at the diplomatic level. Pakistan and Iran have a common border of about 909 km that separates the territory of Balochistan from both sides.

The first Prime Minister of Pakistan, Quaid-e-Millat Liaquat Ali Khan, made an official visit to Iran in 1949, while the Emperor of Iran made his first official visit to Pakistan in 1950. Iran also played a very positive role in the 1965 India-Pakistan war and provided accommodation and fuel to Pakistan’s planes. On the other hand, Pakistan also played the role of brotherhood and is still playing. However, the defence relations between the two countries are also noteworthy. Cross-training, bilateral naval diplomacy and exchanges of high-level defence visits are common. The visit of the Iranian President is an important development in many respects. He is also the first head of state to visit Pakistan after the new government in Pakistan. India is also worried about the Iranian president’s visit, while the US has threatened sanctions on trade agreements with Iran. This is a sword that hangs over Pakistan’s head all the time. Pakistan is a sovereign country and has full authority and freedom to take decisions in the best interest of its people. This is the time to shape our foreign policy according to our national interests. On the other hand, keeping current situation of the Middle East in front, the visit is vital with regards to world politics. In this regard, it is inevitable for Muslim countries to become economically strong; which is the ultimate need of it.

—The writer is contributing columnist.

Historic Visit of Iranian President to Pakistan & US By M Abdullah Hamid Gul

Source: https://pakobserver.net/historic-visit-of-iranian-president-to-pakistan-us/

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