By Abid Siddique Chaudhry
ISLAMABAD – At the invitation of the Foreign Minister of Iraq, His Excellency Fuad Hussein, Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi is undertaking a bilateral visit to the Republic of Iraq from 28 – 30 May 2021.
During the visit, the Foreign Minister will hold detailed discussions on bilateral cooperation with his counterpart. He will also review cooperation between the two countries in multilateral organizations, in particular the United Nations, its subsidiary organizations, and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). He will also exchange views on problems concerning Muslim Ummah, as well as global and regional issues of mutual interest.
Foreign Minister Qureshi will also call on the leadership of Iraq and confer with senior Iraqi Ministers on bilateral matters pertaining to respective areas of cooperation, in particular the issues pertaining to the management and well-being of thousands of Pakistani Zaireen visiting sacred sites in Iraq every year.
Pakistan and Iraq enjoy long-standing fraternal ties rooted in shared faith, values and culture. The bilateral relations benefit from shared understanding and similarity of views on a number of regional and global issues. The two countries continue to collaborate closely to enhance bilateral cooperation in diverse fields. In addition to growing bilateral political and defense ties, the two countries recently signed an agreement on cooperation between their Foreign Service Academies (April 2021). Thousands of Pakistani Zaireen visit Iraq every year with religious zeal and fervor.
The visit of Foreign Minister Qureshi comes in the backdrop of a number of Ministerial-level visits from both sides in the past few months, which signify the importance accorded by both countries to augmenting bilateral relationship for mutual benefit. The visit is expected to add further momentum to the positive trajectory of brotherly ties between Pakistan and Iraq.