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Pakistan relays US about energy requirements: FO

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Office spokesperson Mumtaz Zahra Baloch Friday said Pakistan has relayed the United States about its energy requirements as both the countries are in contact over the matter.

Addressing media persons at the Foreign Office in Islamabad, Baloch said she was aware of the Washington’s comments regarding Pak-Iran talks on energy trade after President Seyyed Ebrahim Raisi’s visit.

Earlier this week, a State Department spokesperson had warned Islamabad regarding “potential risk of sanctions”.

“We advise anyone considering business deals with Iran to be aware of the potential risk of sanctions,” the spokesperson said.

Baloch, on the other hand, maintained that cooperation for trade on preferential basis was present between Pakistan and Iran to fulfil the former’s crucial necessities.

She said that during President’s Raisi’s visit, the matter of Pakistan-Iran gas pipeline was discussed and it was also reflected in the joint statement later. Both countries cogitated about energy and electricity trade, she added.

In a 28-point joint statement on April 24, Islamabad and Tehran reiterated the importance of energy cooperation and electricity trade. It also shared the details about bilateral agreements, including plans pertaining to the Pak-Iran gas pipeline project, set forth by both the two nations.

The FO’s statement came a day after the US State Department had hinted at the risk of sanctions in light of the business deals between both nations.

Baloch also said that talks with Iran on free trade agreement were underway. “We think that controlling export has become political,” she said.

The FO spokesperson said Pakistan discussed about the trade route between Gwadar and Chabahar ports with the Iranian president, adding that bilateral relations between the two nations were strong.

On Israel’s atrocities in Palestine, Baloch said Pakistan condemned Israel’s barbarism in Palestine and sought international investigation of Palestinians’ ethnic cleansing by the apartheid state. She said Pakistan and Iran had the same stance on the issue of Gaza and Kashmir.

She rubbished the “2023 Country Report on Human Rights Practices” issued by the US State Department, saying that a suitable procedure was not adopted in preparation of the report.

PM to attend World Economic Forum meeting in Riyadh

During the presser, Baloch also informed journalists that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif will be attending the World Economic Forum Special Meeting on Global Collaboration, Growth and Energy to be held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, from April 28 to 29.

The prime minister will be accompanied by Foreign Minister Ishaq Dar to participate in the high-level forum where they will present Pakistan’s priorities specifically in global health architecture, inclusive growth, revitalising regional collaboration and the need for striking a balance between promoting growth and energy consumption.

On the margins of the main event, both the premier and Dar will also hold bilateral meetings with world leaders, heads of international organisations bodies and other leading personalities participating in the event.

Source: International The News