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Pakistan ready to ‘mediate’ between Russia and Ukraine: PM Imran

The premier shares concern over the continued military conflict
Published 08 Mar, 2022 12:11am
Prime minister Imran Khan and president of the European Council Charles Michel discussed the Ukraine situation. File photo
Prime minister Imran Khan and president of the European Council Charles Michel discussed the Ukraine situation. File photo

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday held a telephonic conversation with the President of the European Council Charles Michel and discussed the Ukraine situation and offered to play a facilitating role for de-escalation in the Russia-Ukraine war.

In his remarks, the premier shared concern over the continued military conflict and highlighted its potential adverse economic impact on developing countries.

He also stressed the urgent need for a "ceasefire and de-escalation."

“I emphasised the importance of humanitarian relief & reiterated the call for a solution through dialogue & diplomacy,” PM Imran said in a Twitter post.

The premier said that he and Charles Michel agreed that "countries like Pakistan could play a facilitating role in this endeavour."

“I look forward to close engagement to promote shared objectives,” he wrote.

The development comes a day after PM Imran criticized European Union ambassadors’ statement for wanting Pakistan to condemn Russia for the Ukraine invasion.

“Have you ever acknowledged Pakistan’s support in the war against terror which claimed 80,000 lives and caused other collateral damage,” he said while addressing a public gathering in Mailsi town of Vehari district on Sunday.

“Has anyone of you severed trade relations with India or objected to its unlawful actions,” PM Imran asked, adding, “are we slaves and act according to your wishes”.

Last week, ambassadors of 23 countries issued a press release, asking Pakistan “to join them in condemning Russia’s actions [in Ukraine] and to voice support for upholding the UN Charter and the founding principles of international law”.

Objecting to that press release, the Foreign Office had said: “We took note of that and in a subsequent meeting with a group of ambassadors, we expressed our concern about that because it was not the way diplomacy should be practised”.

The UN General Assembly last week overwhelmingly adopted a resolution that "demands" Russia "immediately" withdraw from Ukraine.

While abstaining from the vote, Pakistan underscored the need for a diplomatic solution to the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, hoping that talks initiated between the two countries in Belarus would bring about an end to hostilities.

“Pakistan remains deeply concerned at the recent turn of events. This reflects a failure of diplomacy,” Ambassador Munir Akram said.

In his remarks at the special session – the eleventh called since the founding of the United Nations – Ambassador Akram said Prime Minister Imran Khan had regretted the latest situation between Russia and Ukraine and had hoped that diplomacy could avert military conflict.

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