Pakistan promises to help Iran recover abducted border guards: FM Zarif

Islamabad, Oct 31, IRNA - Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says Pakistan has promised to help Iran recover the Iranian border guards safely, who had been abducted by terrorists at the border crossing point in Mirjaveh.

In an interview with IRNA soon after his arrival in Islamabad Zarif said Iran and Pakistan are very strong neighbors, and Tehran values its ties with Islamabad.

On October 16, Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) said terrorists had kidnapped the Iranian forces, including local Basij volunteer forces and border guards, near the town of Mirjaveh on the Pakistani border.

Mohammad Javad Zarif said unfortunately some terrorist elements had abducted Iranian border guards near Pak-Iran border and that is why Iranian authorities are in constant touch with their Pakistani counterparts for the safe recovery of border guards.

“I have come to Pakistan to further intensify efforts for the safe recovery of Iranian border guards,” Zarif added.

To a question he said Pakistani officials have promised Iranian authorities to do their level best to help recover abducted border guards.

FM Zarif arrived in Islamabad early on Wednesday to hold meetings with Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi. He is also expected to hold meeting Pakistan Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa.

Ambassador of Iran to Pakistan Mehdi Honardoost and Senior officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs received Zarif at the airport. It is the second visit of Iranian minister to Pakistan since Prime Minister Imran Khan's government came into power.

Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qasemi had said that during his visit, Zarif will be kept abreast of the measures Pakistan government has adopted for security and release of Iranian border guards.

Earlier FM Javad Zarif had also called his Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi to discuss the situation arising following the abduction of Iranian guards.

Meanwhile Commander of the Ground Forces of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Brigadier General Mohammad Pakpour had also visited Pakistan to discuss the fate of abducted Iranian border guards.

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