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Pakistan's foreign minister in Tehran on 3-day visit

Shah Mahmood Qureshi to discuss Afghan peace process, Kashmir dispute with Iranian leadership

Islamuddin Sajid   | 20.04.2021
Pakistan's foreign minister in Tehran on 3-day visit

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan

Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Tuesday arrived in Tehran on a three-day official visit, the Foreign Ministry said.

He was received by Iran's senior Foreign Ministry officials and Pakistan's ambassador to the Islamic Republic.

During his stay, Qureshi will conduct delegation-level talks with his Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif, and will also be received by President Hassan Rouhani.

"The two sides will discuss regional security situation including the latest developments in the Afghan Peace Process and the Jammu & Kashmir dispute," the statement read.

US President Joe Biden has decided to withdraw America's remaining troops from the war-torn country by Sept. 11 -- the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks in the US.

Negotiations for a post-war Afghanistan between Kabul and the Taliban continue in Qatar since last September, but hardly any progress has been made.

"Iran is a neighbor of Afghanistan and the ongoing Afghan peace process is important for Iran -- just like Pakistan ... so we will discuss all these developments," Qureshi said in a separate video message.

He also thanked Iran's supreme leader and the Iranian leadership for continuous support to the Kashmir people.

India and Pakistan claim the disputed Kashmir region in full but rule only in part. New Delhi withdrew the state's autonomy in August 2019 and split it into two federally administered territories.

Qureshi's Iran visit comes soon after he concluded his tour to the UAE, which has confirmed mediation to ease tensions between India and Pakistan.

Ban on Pakistani 'kinnow' lifted

Meanwhile, Iran lifted restrictions on the import of Pakistan's prized kinnow, a type of orange.

"Always a pleasure to be in Iran, and I am pleased to share some good news for our farmers. Following discussions, happy to announce that Iran has lifted restrictions on the import of Pakistani Kinnow," Qureshi tweeted.

Iran had banned the import of Pakistani kinnows in 2011. The restriction was temporarily lifted in 2017 following which exports continued through the land route only.

Waheed Ahmed, chairman of the All Pakistan Fruit & Vegetable Exporters Importers and Merchants Association, welcomed the development.

"Iran is a big market for Pakistani #kinnow, I hope this will help to boost the bilateral legal trade of brother countries and we hope that other trade barriers will also be removed soon," he said on Twitter.

​​​​​​​*Aamir Latif contributed to this story from Karachi

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