After a few days of tensions between Iran and Pakistan early this January, the top officials of both countries are now holding talks to extend cooperation in fighting terrorism.
This Monday morning, the foreign ministers of Iran and Pakistan held a joint press conference in Islamabad, the capital city of Pakistan, to look for ways to ease the recent tensions between the two neighboring countries and extend cooperation in the field of fighting terrorists. During the press conference, Pakistani Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani, alongside his Iranian counterpart Hossein AmirAbdollahian, announced their readiness to look for mutual plans to establish high-level consultative mechanisms with the aim of extending cooperation in strengthening joint political and security relations, also putting an end to the recent tensions.
Tensions between Iran and Pakistan spiked after Tehran carried out a counter-terror operation on the Jaish al-Adl group located within Pakistan’s borders. In return, Pakistan launched an attack against an alleged terrorist hideout in the Sistan and Baluchestan province of Iran.
Earlier this Saturday, an unknown assailant gunned down at least nine Pakistani nationals and injured three others in the suburb of the city of Saravan in the southeastern Iranian province of Sistan and Baluchestan, further complicating the situation for Iran and Pakistan.
Strongly rebuking the attack and condoling with the Pakistani government and the survivors of the terrorist attack, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kan’ani said the same day that “Iran and Pakistan will not allow enemies to cause damage to the countries’ brotherly relations,” adding that Iran’s relevant authorities “are continuing their investigation into the tragedy.”
During the joint press conference, the Pakistani foreign minister noted that both Islamabad and Tehran agreed to “take on a collective and concerted attitude” regarding cooperation in the continued fight against terrorist activities in the region, especially around the bordering areas.
For his part, the Iranian foreign minister asserted that neither Iran nor Pakistan would allow the activities of “malicious groups” to harm bilateral relations and security.
AmirAbdollahian also reiterated that Tehran and Islamabad sacrificed much in the fight against regional terrorism in recent years. “[The] effective fight against terrorism by both countries is inevitable, and we agree that the borders of the two countries will be the borders of economic development and welfare of the people living in both,” the Iranian foreign minister said.
No more open space for terrorists!
While the two top officials of the two neighboring countries were meeting in Islamabad Monday morning, Iran’s security police announced that they have successfully dismantled a terror cell in the Jakigor region and another one in the border region of Jakigor, Sistan and Balochistan.
Giving details of the anti-terrorist operation, Iranian Brigadier General Ahmad Ali Goudarzi said on Monday that the border guards and the terror cell engaged in an armed clash, which took three hours and ended up in the death of one militant and two injuries.
“Border guards found six bombs, three of which are hand and three 40mm calibers, in addition to an explosive belt,” Goudarzi said, adding that the militant group “has been planning an operation inside Iran by bringing in large quantities of weapons, ammunition, explosives, grenades, and RPGs.”
All in all, it seems that Monday’s joint press conference between Amirabdllahian and Abbas Jilani can really put out the fire of recent Iran-Pakistan tensions as it promises closer ties between the two countries and more bilateral cooperation in security and political areas.