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India congratulates Pakistan on winning UNSC seat

world Updated: Oct 22, 2011 12:32 IST

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India today congratulated Pakistan on winning a non-permanent seat in the UN Security Council, saying it looks forward to working with its neighbour on a range of global issues.

"We warmly welcome and congratulate Pakistan's election to the Security Council," India's Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Manjeev Singh Puri told PTI.

Puri hugged Pakistan's envoy to the UN Abdullah Hussain Haroon, whom he called a "fine ambassador", outside the General Assembly hall here after the results of the voting were declared.

Puri said India and Pakistan have "common perception" on a host of global issues and "we look forward to working with them through the year 2012."

India joined as non-permanent member of the UNSC on January 2011 and its term will end on December 31, 2012. Pakistan's two-year term will begin on January 1, 2012 till December 31, 2013.

The two nuclear-armed neighbours have thrice before been together in the Council in 1968, 1977 and 1984.

India's Permanent Representative to the UN Hardeep Singh Puri, who is travelling outside the US, congratulated Haroon over the phone.

Haroon, who shares cordial relations with his Indian counterpart, said "I am very grateful to him (Hardeep Singh Puri) and I would like to appreciate the reciprocation of India to Pakistan. This will help in getting a lot of things moving forward."

Haroon and Puri had famously sat together in the US open stands to watch the men from their countries play the tennis tournament.

India said it has been together with Pakistan on the Council on previous occasions and has had "very good and constructive engagement."

The Indian Deputy Permanent Representative said Pakistan and India in the UN are "exactly on the same page" on a host of issues on the global agenda.

"Almost in all areas of global issues, there is great convergence between India and Pakistan," Puri said.

Haroon said Pakistan's win "is a great day for the subcontinent."

"With India we have worked together for two years, why should we not do it for a third," Haroon said.

Noting that Pakistan has always had a commitment to security, Haroon said "once we stop looking at each other with jaundiced eyes, you understand a lot of each other's problems."

Haroon said Pakistan’s election is the acknowledgement by the international community of its services and its capabilities to contribute to the maintenance of international peace and security which is the main function of the Security Council.