Iran President Ebrahim Raisi in Pakistan: Why it's seen as an important visit | World News - Hindustan Times
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Iran President Ebrahim Raisi in Pakistan: Why it's seen as an important visit

Apr 22, 2024 12:55 PM IST

Iran President Ebrahim Raisi commenced his three-day visit to Pakistan on Monday, amid heightened tensions in the Middle East.

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi commenced his three-day visit to neighbouring country Pakistan on Monday, months after the two nations carried out cross-border airstrikes on rival lands. Raisi's visit to Pakistan comes when tensions remain heightened in the Middle East after Iran launched its rebuttal attack against Israel this month.

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi gets down from a plane upon his arrival in Islamabad, Pakistan on Monday. (AP)
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi gets down from a plane upon his arrival in Islamabad, Pakistan on Monday. (AP)

The Iranian President will be accompanied by his spouse and a high-level delegation comprising the foreign minister and other members of the cabinet, senior officials as well as a large business delegation, according to a statement by foreign office on Sunday.

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The official statement also says that Raisi's visit from April 22 to 24 would be the “first visit by any Head of State to Pakistan after the general elections in February 2024”.

During the visit, President Raisi will meet President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Senate Chairman Syed Yusuf Raza Gillani and National Assembly Speaker Sardar Sadiq. He will also visit Lahore and Karachi and meet with the provincial leadership.

Importance of Raisi's visit to Pakistan

Iran President Ebrahim Raisi's visit to Pakistan comes at a time when tensions between his country and Israel are heightened. Israel launched airstrikes against Iran's Isfahan province where there had been reports of explosions. This followed Iran's unprecedented drone and missile attacks against Israel last weekend. The tit-for-tat military actions after an alleged Israeli attack on an Iranian diplomatic mission in Damascus had raised global concerns.

Raisi's visit to Islamabad is aimed at strengthening the ties between the two countries in the middle of the disturbances in the Middle East. Raisi and Shareef will also discuss regional and global developments and bilateral cooperation to combat the common threat of terrorism.

Read more: Iran demonstrated power during operation against Israel: Supreme Leader Khamenei

The official statement by Iran says that this visit is aimed at strengthening the ties between the two countries, at a time when Iran is facing sanctions from the United States for launching a drone attack against Israel.

Raisi is visiting Pakistan months after the cordial ties between the two neighbours suffered a setback when Tehran shocked Islamabad by carrying out airstrikes against alleged militant hideouts in restive Balochistan province in January. Pakistan swiftly responded by using killer drones and rockets to carry out “precision military strikes” against what it called “terrorist hideouts” in Iran’s Siestan-Balochistan province, killing 9 people.

While the two countries were quick to resolve their relations, it is expected that the Iranian president's visit to Pakistan will further smooth over the recent rift between the country.

(With inputs from PTI)

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