ISLAMABAD: Senate Chairman Syed Nayyer Hussain Bokhari has said that Pakistan’s foreign policy is based on the internationally-recognised principles of sovereign equality, non-interference in the internal affairs of other states, respect for territorial integrity, non-aggression and peaceful settlement of disputes.
Addressing Majlis Shura Islami (the Iranian parliament), Mr Bokhari said the nations could solve the multifaceted problems they faced through proactive participation in multilateral institutions and organisations, a press release received here said on Sunday.
“We are committed to finding a negotiated settlement of the Kashmir dispute,” he said.
Speaking about Pakistan-Iran ties, he said the two countries had similar views on international and regional issues and were cooperating with each other in international forums.
Iran was the first country to recognise Pakistan after the latter gained independence and thus the two countries had six decades of close relations.
The Senate chairman said he was satisfied over the state of bilateral relations which he said had evolved into an equation based on mutual respect, understanding and cooperation. There was a strong bond of affinity between the leaders of the neighbouring countries.
Mr Bokhari recalled that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was the first head of state to visit Pakistan after the PPP-led government took office in 2008. He again visited Pakistan earlier this year. And Asif Ali Zardari has visited Iran four times since taking over as the president of Pakistan.
The Senate chairman said that Pakistan and Iran were geographically located in such a way that the nature and content of their ties had profound impact on the peace and stability of their region.
He said the two countries had a number of schemes in the pipeline, including the Iran-Pakistan pipeline project for the supply of natural gas, project for the supply of 100MW to Gwadar and project for supply of another 1,000MW to Balochistan.
He said the time had come for the two neighbours to move towards a more beneficial relationship in all areas, particularly trade and investment, energy, security, communications and infrastructure.
Mr Bokhari also underlined the need for the parliamentarians of the two countries to forge better ties between their legislatures.
“Close cooperation among our parliaments is essential to bring our peoples closer to each other. It will provide us with a mechanism to promote shared ideals of democracy, peace and development,” he remarked.
Being victims of terrorism, the two countries were determined to fight and eliminate the scourge in all its forms and manifestations, he said.
The Senate chairman called upon the leaders of the Ummah to build up energies and work for the wellbeing, prosperity and betterment of the Muslim world.
Mr Bokhari also visited the shrine of Hazrat Imam Reza and the holy city of Qom.