Iran’s Javad Zarif to visit Pakistan today, seeks support amid tension in Arabian Gulf

Screengrab: ANI

Islamabad: Javad Zarif, Iran’s Foreign Minister is expected to arrive here today to brief the Pakistani leadership about the ongoing tensions between Ankara and Washington, a senior diplomatic source said on Thursday.

Radio Pakistan quoted sources from the Foreign Ministry who confirmed that Zarif, during his two-day visit, is expected to meet Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa.

One of the major issues that would top the discussion is the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project. Pakistan has recently informed Iran that it could not proceed with the project as long as US sanctions remain on Tehran.

Zarif’s visit has come in the backdrop of rising tensions in the Arabian Gulf region after Washington’s recent deployment of an aircraft carrier and a bomber taskforce to the Middle East in response to what the US officials called “a credible threat” by Iranian regime forces.

The top Iranian diplomat has already travelled to other regional countries, including China, Japan, India, and Turkmenistan and briefed the top officials of the countries about Iran’s commitment to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) endorsed by the UN Security Council Resolution 2231.

Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has said that Pakistan would not join any camp in case of a conflict, warning that any escalation in tensions would be detrimental for the entire region.

Pakistan has also urged both the US and Iran to show maximum restraint and insisted for dialogue as the only way possible to resolve contentious issues, Express Tribune reports.

The Foreign Office officials were quoted as saying that Islamabad would reiterate its stance during Zarif’s visit. It is expected that the two sides would also review the bilateral ties during the visit.

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