Pakistan keen on Iran’s role in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor: Dy Speaker

Pakistan keen on Iran

Qasim Khan Suri made the remarks in an exclusive interview with IRNA.

He said that CPEC along with the 25-year strategic cooperation plan between Iran and China, will enhance joint cooperation of the three important countries and will pave the way for regional communication, fight against poverty, strengthen trade and create job opportunities.

Referring to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project, he said, “We are eager for Iran’s participation in this plan as Tehran-Beijing-Islamabad partnership would benefit the entire region.”

The 51-year-old politician from ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party and a close figure to Prime Minister Imran Khan, warned against the efforts of some countries to spoil the atmosphere of regional cooperation and prevent formation of coalitions for understanding among the regional states.

“We must stop expansionism in the region, especially in the subcontinent, to harm our common interests and goals,” he said.

Under the CPEC many infrastructure projects are under construction throughout Pakistan. Originally valued at $46 billion, the value of CPEC projects is now worth $62 billion.

Construction of rail and road transport networks from northeastern Pakistan, bordering China to southwestern Pakistan, at Gwadar port is one of the most important parts of the CPEC project. It is the flagship project of the One Belt, One Road initiative. The development of Pakistan’s Gwadar port is also part of the plan.

The multibillion-dollar plan has created a “strong” and “long-term” link between China and Pakistan. The launch of the project shifted the focus of relations between the two countries from defense cooperation to economic cooperation.

**The government and people of Pakistan will not recognize Israel

The Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly of Pakistan commenting about the compromise of some countries in the region with the Zionist regime in the region said that our position is very clear in this regards and we would never accept Israel.

Qasim Khan Suri expressing his views said Israel is an illegitimate and usurper regime that has occupied the lands of the oppressed Palestinian nation and we will never leave our Palestinian brothers alone to confront the occupying regime.

“Although the decision of some countries to compromise with the Zionists is related to their independent decision and their own foreign policy, but unfortunately these decisions are a sign of discord in the Islamic international community that has prevented addressing other concerns of the Islamic Ummah” , he said.

The Deputy Speaker stressed the need for the unity of the Islamic world to address common challenges, including the Palestine and Kashmir.

**Iran-Pakistan Parliamentary Friendship Group, the largest friendship group in Pakistan’s National Assembly

In response to a question about the parliamentary relations between Iran and Pakistan, the Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly said: Pakistan has a friendship group with the Islamic Republic of Iran in its National Assembly, which is the largest friendship group in the parliament.

“We are determined to strengthen the role of parliaments to develop bilateral relations and cooperation between the governments of the two countries in various fields,” Suri added.

He said Iran is very close to the city of Quetta, the capital of Pakistan’s Balochistan province and the provincial government is closely following issues related to developing trade, strengthening border infrastructure and helping to resolve obstacles in these areas.

“Pakistan is committed to strengthen cross-border cooperation, including fencing, building border markets and expanding economic ties,” said the Dy Speaker.

The member of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) expressing his views said the performance of the Iranian government in overcoming challenges, including sanctions and the continuation of development and prosperity of the country is commendable.

“The next US administration must play a role in regional peace and global security,” he said, expressing hope that the new White House team would move towards regional and global peace instead of tension and a policy of violence.

“We are witnessing unrest in many parts of the world, including Syria, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan, Kashmir and Palestine, but this situation must improve,” added Suri.

He stated that Islamabad is strongly opposed to coercive measures and unilateral sanctions against Tehran and called on the international community to play a role in resolving these problems.

“Nevertheless, the Iranian people faced serious challenges during the Corona outbreak, especially the imposition of sanctions,” he said.

**The need to strengthen security cooperation between Iran and Pakistan

Qasim Khan Suri said the long common border between the Islamic Republic of Iran and Pakistan is factor of lasting friendship, said the government of Imran Khan is trying to to further strengthen cooperation with the Islamic Republic of Iran and develop Cross-border interactions with improved security.

He welcomed inauguration of second cross-border gateway between Iran and Pakistan, saying that Rimdan-Gabd crossing would strengthen trade between the two neighboring states.

“The incumbent government of Pakistan is determined to strengthen border cooperation with Iran by facilitating trade and development of border markets,” he said.

“The borders of Iran and Pakistan are the border of friendship and peace, and we want to deepen cooperation between the security and intelligence agencies of the two neighboring countries to strengthen this atmosphere,” he added.

He said: “Increasing the border crossings between the two neighboring countries, in addition to strengthening and managing joint trade, will also help a lot in combating the menaces of smuggling.”

**The need for a peaceful approach by the new US administration

“We hope that with the arrival of Biden, the United States will move towards peace, not targeting countries,” said the Deputy Speaker of the Pakistani National Assembly on the approach of the next US administration headed by Joe Biden.

Qasim Khan Suri stressed the future US administration must play a role for peace in the region and global security.

“We are witnessing unrest in many parts of the world, including Syria, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan, Kashmir and Palestine, but this situation must improve,” he said.

He condemned terrorist operation against Iran which led to the cruel martyrdom of Dr. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, a prominent Iranian nuclear scientist.

He added: This is the worst act we have ever witnessed.

“Our region is in dire need of development and prosperity alongside peace and security, and we believe that the Biden government should work to promote peace rather than continuing with previous traditions such as sanctions and tensions,” the Pakistani politician said.

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