Pak to play role in regional peace & stability: FM

Qureshi says Pakistan is closely monitoring the Middle East situation

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our correspondent
ISLAMABAD
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Wednesday has said that war is not in the interest of anyone and that its dangerous for the peace. While talking to news channel, the foreign minister said that Pakistan is closely monitoring the Middle East situation and that the region should refrain from going into any severe circumstances. The use of power should be avoided, he stressed.
FM Shah Mahmood said that the escalating situation can affect Afghan peace process. Pakistan is desirous of peace and stability in the region and will continue to play its role to maintain it, he went on to say. The minister further urged the United Nations to play its role in de-escalation of tension between Tehran and Washington-D.C. in the best interest of the region.
The reaction came after Iran fired missiles Wednesday at Iraqi bases used by the US military, officials in Iran and US said, in the first act of the Islamic republic’s promised revenge for the US killing of a top Iranian general.
The Pentagon said it was still “working on initial battle damage assessments” after “Iran launched more than a dozen ballistic missiles against US military and coalition forces in Iraq.”
“It is clear that these missiles were launched from Iran and targeted at least two Iraqi military bases hosting US military and coalition personnel at Al-Assad and Irbil,” the Pentagon said.
There were no immediate reports on casualties but the Pentagon said it had been ready, after days of steadily mounting tension and exchanges of threats of war. “These bases have been on high alert due to indications that the Iranian regime planned to attack our forces and interests in the region,” a spokesman said.
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has said that Pakistan desires peace and stability in the region and will continue to play its due role in this context. Pakistan does not want tension in the region as it cannot afford a new war.
Responding to a question regarding tension between Tehran and Washington-D.C., the foreign minister urged the United Nations to play its role in de-escalation of tension between the two countries in the best interest of the region.
Meanwhile, Foreign Office (FO) has issued travel advisory for Pakistani nationals while planning visit to Iraq amid prevailing security situation after the recent developments in Middle East region.
Iran had launched ballistic missile attack on US forces in Iraq in the early hours of Wednesday in retaliation for the US drone strike on an Iranian commander whose killing has raised fears of a wider war in the Middle East.
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had given a policy statement on Monday over the evolving situation in the Middle East in the Senate session, saying Pakistan will neither allow its soil to be used against any country nor become part of any regional conflict.

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