Pakistan, Iran to strengthen cooperation on security, border issues

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Iran on Tuesday agreed to strengthen cooperation on security and border management issues, enhance intelligence sharing and to increase collaboration in economic sector.

Addressing a press conference along with Iranian Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli after a meeting here, Minister for Interior and Narcotics Control Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said the two sides discussed issues of security, cross border terrorism, smuggling, human trafficking, greater intelligence sharing, cooperation between security forces and economic relations.

Earlier the Iranian delegation held a meeting with the Interior Minister which was attended by Iran’s ambassador to Pakistan Ali Raza Haghighian. Secretary Interior was also present in the meeting.

In his opening remarks before the media, Chaudhry Nisar said he had a very long and detailed discussion with the Iranian Minister on different aspects of Pakistan-Iran relations.

“We both agreed to form a task force or commission which will put in place entire framework for the upcoming visit of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to Iran.”

The present government wants relations with Iran which are reflective of the desires of people of the two countries and is a model of friendship for others, he added.

The Minister said, “We have common faith, history and culture and sky is the limit in our relations. Any irritants must be removed. It is important that we grab this opportunity.”

Strong ties between Pakistan and Iran will be guarantee of peace and stability in the region, he said adding the government of Nawaz Sharif wants transparent and strong relations which serve as cornerstone of stability in the region and further economic cooperation between the two countries.

Chaudhry Nisar said they agreed to establish a hotline to keep contact between Frontier Corps and Iranian officials to resolve any border issues.

Director General of Military Operations of the two countries will also keep in touch, he told.

“If there is any issue, we will carry out operation on our side of the border and Iran will conduct operation on their side.”

Iranian Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli in his remarks said he had very good meeting with the Prime Minister during which important issues were raised.

He said while during the meeting with his counterpart, it was agreed to strengthen border markets, increase exchange of commodities and create more opportunities for bilateral investment.

“We agreed on expanding cooperative relations and improving intelligence sharing.”

The Iranian Minister said Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan will hold a trilateral meeting to increase security cooperation.

He said increased regional economic cooperation will lead to sustainable security on the borders.

To a question, Chaudhry Nisar said Pakistan has the best of terms with Iran and Saudi Arabia.

The Iranian Minister said it is priority in foreign policy of Iran to promote good relations with Islamic and regional countries especially with those which are its neighbours. “We are determined to have good relations with Saudi Arabia.”

He stressed on keeping unity among the Islamic countries.

To another question, he said Pakistan and Iran are taking steps for signing a security agreement.