Kremlin confirms WION’s newsbreak, Pak PM Imran Khan to visit Russia soon

Written By: Anas Mallick WION
Islamabad Updated: Feb 08, 2022, 12:47 PM(IST)

File photo: Pakistan PM Imran Khan (left) and Russian President Vladimir Putin (right). Photograph:( WION Web Team )

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The last time an elected Pakistani Prime Minister visited Russia on a bilateral visit was in March 1999 when the then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif visited the country.

Kremlin confirmed WION's newsbreak on Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan's impending visit to Russia.

Preparation are underway for PM Imran Khan's visit to Moscow, however, the Kremlin said it will announce the exact date in a "timely fashion".

WION was the first channel to report on February 6 that PM Imran Khan will be the first Pakistan Prime Minister in 23 years to embark on a bilateral visit to Russia this month after being invited by Russian President Vladimir Putin. 

Also Read: No Nord Stream 2 if Russia invades Ukraine, says Biden

On the agenda of the visit would be bilateral ties, the Afghanistan situation, including talks of defence cooperation and commitments to take forward the North-South gas pipeline that expands over 1,100 kilometres and which aims at transferring imported gas from the port city of Karachi to the load centre of the Punjab province.

The visit which will be held in the latter half of February 2022, will be closely watched out by other countries in the region. In the absence of a telephone call between Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan and US President Joe Biden, this visit will be looked at as a regional re-alignment on the part of the Pakistan government.

The last time an elected Pakistani Prime Minister visited Russia on a bilateral visit was in March 1999 when the then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif visited the country. Since then in 2003 the then Pakistani military dictator visited Russia and in 2011, the then President Asif Ali Zardari paid a visit to Russia.

Relations between Pakistan and Russia in the past have not been ideal following the country’s alleged involvement in the collapse of the USSR, however, a new dimension of the relationship was seen when the former Pakistani Army chief General Raheel Sharif visited Russia in 2015 and laid another foundation of military diplomacy that eventually led to being converted in exchanges of formal diplomatic contacts and high-level visits, including one by the Pakistani National Security Advisor Moeed Yusuf in December last year. 

The Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov visited Pakistan in April 2021.

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