PM and Putin discuss peace, stability of Afghanistan

PM will attend Jubilee summit of SCO, CSTO this week

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ISLAMABAD: The Prime Minister received a telephone call from Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Recalling their earlier telephone conversation of the two leaders exchanged views on the latest developments of Afghanistan, bilateral cooperation, and collaboration in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).

The Prime Minister underscored the importance of peace and stability in Afghanistan for regional security and prosperity.

He emphasized the urgent need for provision of humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan and the imperative of averting an economic crisis.

The Prime Minister underlined the need for the international community to remain engaged in Afghanistan. He stressed that the Afghan people should not be abandoned at this crucial juncture.

In the bilateral context, the Prime Minister emphasized the growing cooperation across a range of sectors and reaffirmed Pakistan’s commitment to further upgrade the overall relationship.

He underscored that strengthening trade and investments and energy cooperation were the cornerstones of engagement with Russia.

The Prime Minister also reaffirmed the government’s resolve for early realization of the Pakistan Stream Gas Pipeline Project.

He reiterated his invitation to President Putin to visit Pakistan. President Putin renewed his invitation to Prime Minister Imran Khan to undertake a visit to Russia.

Relations between Pakistan and Russia have been on an upward trajectory propelled by converging views on important regional and international issues, growing trust, and increasing bilateral cooperation manifested by recent high-level interactions. The two leaders agreed to remain in close contact.

Further, Prime Minister Imran Khan directed to ensure transparency in completion of the privatization process of various public entities, including Pakistan Steel Mills and Jinnah Convention Centre.

In a meeting with Federal Minister for Privatization Muhammadmian Soomro, the prime minister was briefed on the current status of privatization of different bodies.

The Prime Minister was also updated on the encouraging results of the ongoing roadshows, being held on September 13-21, aimed at attracting foreign investors for the revival of Pakistan Steel Mills.

The process regarding the privatization of National Power Parks Management Company Limited (NPPMCL), Jinnah Convention Center (JCC) and Services International Hotel (SIH) Lahore also came under discussion.

Prime Minister Imran Khan stressed that close coordination and consultations between Pakistan and Russia on the evolving situation in Afghanistan were of crucial importance

Prime Minister Imran Khan chaired the meeting of the federal cabinet here.

The meeting discussed various agenda items on development projects and other issues of importance, according to the PM Office.

The situation in Afghanistan post withdrawal of the US troops also came under discussion. In addition, Prime Minister Imran Khan will leave for Tajikistan on September 16 on two-day long official visit at the invitation of President Emomali Rahmon.

The premier, who will be flanked by Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi during the visit, will attend the jubilee Summits of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and the Collective Security Treaty Organization in Dushanbe.

He is also scheduled to hold meetings with Tajikistan’s top leadership, and a new package of documents on further mutually beneficial cooperation will be signed.

Within the framework of the visit the fourth meeting of the Business Council of Tajikistan and Pakistan is expected, the Foreign Ministry of Tajikistan said in a statement. The two-day meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of State will be held in Dushanbe on 16th and 17th of this month.

The SCO Heads of Government Council meets once a year to discuss the organisation’s multilateral cooperation strategy and priority areas, to resolve current important economic and other cooperation issues.

Pakistan became a member of the Heads of State Council of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation in its historical meeting of 2017 in Astana.

The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) is a permanent intergovernmental international organisation, the creation of which was announced on 15 June 2001 in Shanghai (China) by the Republic of Kazakhstan, the People’s Republic of China, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Russian Federation, the Republic of Tajikistan, and the Republic of Uzbekistan. It was preceded by the Shanghai Five mechanism, state broadcaster reported.

The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Charter was signed during the St. Petersburg SCO Heads of State meeting in June 2002, and entered into force on 19 September 2003. This is the fundamental statutory document which outlines the organisation’s goals and principles, as well as its structure and core activities.

The SCO’s main goals are as follows: strengthening mutual trust and neighborliness among the member states; promoting their effective cooperation in politics, trade, the economy, research, technology and culture, as well as in education, energy, transport, tourism, environmental protection, and other areas; making joint efforts to maintain and ensure peace, security and stability in the region; and moving towards the establishment of a democratic, fair and rational new international political and economic order.

Proceeding from the Shanghai Spirit, the SCO pursues its internal policy based on the principles of mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality, mutual consultations, respect for cultural diversity, and a desire for common development, while its external policy is conducted in accordance with the principles of non-alignment, non-targeting any third country, and openness.

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