February, 23, 2024
Pakistan-Iran Restore Ties, Pledge Counterterrorism

Pakistan-Iran Restore Ties, Pledge Counterterrorism

Infostani International: In a swift diplomatic turnaround, Pakistan and Iran have decided to restore full diplomatic relations, bringing back ambassadors by January 26, 2024. The move follows recent tensions rooted in concerns about terrorist activities on each other’s soil. Both nations are now engaged in discussions to prevent future incidents, with Iran’s Foreign Minister visiting Pakistan on January 29 to strengthen diplomatic ties and regional stability.

Restoration of Diplomatic Relations: Pakistan and Iran Navigate Tensions and Seek Collaborative Solutions

On Monday, just days after Pakistan and Iran teetered on the brink of a major conflict, both nations jointly announced the restoration of full diplomatic relations, with ambassadors set to return to their respective capitals by January 26, 2024. The decision follows a telephone conversation between the Foreign Ministers of Pakistan and Iran.

Additionally, Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian of the Islamic Republic of Iran will visit Pakistan on January 29, responding to an invitation from Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani. This visit is expected to play a pivotal role in determining the future course of action and devising a new mechanism to prevent the recurrence of recent events that briefly strained their longstanding relationship.

Despite Pakistan and Iran often touting their “friendly and brotherly” ties, underlying issues have cast shadows of suspicion in both capitals. A major point of contention revolves around concerns, privately voiced by both sides, regarding the use of their respective territories by certain terrorist groups.

Pakistan has longstanding worries about Baloch terrorist outfits finding refuge in the Sistan-Balochistan province of Iran. Conversely, Tehran has accused anti-Iran militant groups, such as Jaish al-Adl, of having hideouts in Balochistan province in Pakistan. Iran justified its cross-border missile strikes by claiming they targeted Jaish al-Adl hideouts, leading Pakistan to retaliate by striking what it identified as sanctuaries of Baloch terrorists. Although Iran acknowledged that those killed in Pakistani strikes were not Iranians, tensions escalated.

Pakistan-Iran Restore Ties, Pledge Counterterrorism
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Pakistan and Iran Forge Path to De-escalation and Cooperation Following Recent Border Tensions

In the aftermath of these tit-for-tat attacks, Pakistan is actively seeking to collaborate with Iran on a new arrangement to prevent future incidents. One proposal is to strengthen existing mechanisms and deepen intelligence cooperation to combat terrorism, rather than violating each other’s sovereignty. These proposals will be discussed during engagements between the two countries.

The Foreign Ministers of Iran and Pakistan have held two discussions since the tit-for-tat attacks, expressing their commitment to working closely to address the matter. Pakistan, emphasizing its lack of intent to escalate tensions, conveyed a message of conciliation and cooperation during a meeting of the National Security Committee on Friday. The high-powered civil-military forum labeled the tit-for-tat attacks as “minor irritants.”

Iran, too, tempered its rhetoric after Pakistan’s retaliatory strikes, emphasizing its adherence to a policy of friendly ties with Islamabad and asserting that no external enemies could strain their cooperation.