Putin and an 'excited' Imran Khan discuss cooperation and exchange views on regional issues

WION Web Team
NEW DELHI Updated: Feb 24, 2022, 09:13 PM(IST)

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Photograph:( Twitter )

Story highlights

In response to the Imran's visit, the United States stated that it is the obligation of every "responsible country" to express opposition to Russia's activities in Ukraine. 

In the midst of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan met with Russian President Vladimir Putin today, despite last-minute calls and warnings from the West.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan are discussing the cooperation between the countries and regional issues at a meeting in Moscow, the Kremlin said.

"The leaders of the two countries are discussing the main issues of bilateral cooperation. An exchange of views is taking place on topical regional topics, including the situation in South Asia," the Kremlin said in a statement.

Earlier, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan said, "What a time I have come, so much excitement," while interacting with members of the delegation that welcomed him.

Imran Khan can also be heard saying, "I am so excited to come to Moscow."

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Imran Khan was welcomed at the airport by Russian deputy foreign minister Igor Morgulov, who was escorted by the Russian military. 

Khan arrived in Russia on a two-day visit yesterday, the first by a Pakistani prime minister in more than two decades.

In response to the visit, the United States stated that it is the obligation of every "responsible country" to express opposition to Russia's activities in Ukraine. 

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"We've communicated to Pakistan our position regarding Russia's further renewed invasion of Ukraine and we have briefed them on our efforts to pursue diplomacy over war," US State Department spokesperson Ned Price said.

The time of the trip was not acceptable, according to a Pakistani geopolitical analyst quoted in the country's The News daily earlier this week.

Analyst and Balochistan politician Jan Achakzai told news agency ANI that Russia did not invite Mr. Khan, but that an invitation was sought. 

"Is it Pakistan's irrelevance or a clear reading of the US that we will come back from Russia empty-handed and will beg for financial concessions from Washington in forums like the IMF, FATF, etc, from a position of further weakness?" he questioned.

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Mr. Achakzai said that Russia is not going to give Pakistan anything because Moscow losing India for the sake of Islamabad's support is not an option.

(With inputs from agencies)

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