0212 GMT November 29, 2021
Tehran and Islamabad have agreed to hold joint naval drills to counter terrorism in the future, said Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Baqeri.
Speaking to IRNA at the end of his second official visit to Pakistan, which came to an end on Friday, Major General Baqeri added that the two neighbors also decided to expand their intelligence cooperation.
He said since a long time ago, the two countries have had naval cooperation in the field of training, and their vessels visit Iranian and Pakistani ports regularly.
Expressing satisfaction with the outcomes of his four-day visit to Pakistan, Major General Baqeri stressed that the two neighbors maintain similar stances toward different issues.
The top general noted that as emphasized by Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, Pakistan has a special status in the Muslim world as well as the eyes of the Islamic Republic and the Iranian Armed Forces owing to the long common border between the two countries and their numerous joint interests.
He added in the recent visit and the previous ones, “we agreed that it is necessary to better ensure the common border’s security,” saying over the past few years, the two neighbors have made significant efforts to this end, the outcome of which has been a far securer joint border.
Major General Baqeri said in his meeting with Pakistani PM Imran Khan, which was also attended by Pakistan’s Defense Minister Pervez Khattak and FM Shah Mahmood Qureshi, “We managed to share our views on bilateral issues and regional developments, particularly those of Afghanistan”.
He gave the assurance that the Islamic Republic is determined to expand relations with neighbors, noting that Iran’s membership in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) will definitely help strengthen ties between Tehran and other member states.
Major General Baqeri said Afghanistan’s situation was among the other issues discussed with political and military Pakistani officials during the visit, adding both sides stressed that a stable and all-inclusive government must be formed in the country with the participation of all Afghan groups.
On Friday, Major General Baqeri visited the Pakistani Navy’s shipyards in the port city of Karachi and was briefed on the process of building warships, boats and submarines, according to Tasnim News Agency.
In talks with the Pakistani military officials, the two sides agreed to work closely together on the construction and maintenance of ships and submarines.
They also stressed that security in the region can only be ensured by regional countries.
The top Iranian general emphasized the importance of maritime security at the common sea borders by conducting joint exercises.
The two sides also agreed to share experiences in various naval fields, remove the obstacles to the fight against drug trafficking and terrorism, and exchange students.
In Islamabad on Thursday, Major General Baqeri held talks with Chief of the Naval Staff of the Pakistan Navy Admiral M Amjad Khan Niazi, Press TV reported.
The two commanders exchanged views about issues of mutual interest and the latest status of relations between Iran and Pakistan, including the current level of bilateral naval cooperation.
Meanwhile, the Pakistani Navy’s public relations office said in a statement that Major General Baqeri’s visit would be a step forward in efforts to further strengthen relations between the two neighboring countries.
During the trip, Major General Baqeri also met with Chief of the Army Staff of Pakistan Army General Qamar Javed Bajwa and Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General Nadeem Reza.