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'Iran invites Pak, China to join Chabahar project'
14 March 2018, 12:31 | Erica Roy
Pakistan, India trade barbs over 'harassment of diplomats'
Zarif also added that the Chahbahar should be liked with with the Gwadar Port as he sought to allay concerns here over Indian involvement in the Iranian port. Zarif said Tehran had also expressed willingness to improve ties with Saudi Arabia when Pakistan's former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif visited Iran during the Yemen crisis, but the kingdom's response was not warm, AP reports. Iran's invitation to Pakistan to help develop its Chabahar seaport project brings good tidings and may be the most pivotal yet in terms of further strengthening this relationship. Iran's handing of the port's operational control to India was disappointing for Pakistan and taking part in Chabahar may engender problems moving forward.
He also repeated Iran's commitment that it would not allow India to carry out any activities against Pakistan. "Our relations with India, just like Pakistan's relations with Saudi Arabia, are not against Islamabad as we understand Pakistan's relations with Saudi Arabia are not against Iran", the Iranian foreign minister said. "We offered to participate in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor". Iran would not allow anybody to hurt Pakistan from its territory, much like Pakistan would not allow its soil to be used against Iran, he said, while delivering a lecture at the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI) yesterday, according to Dawn newspaper.
This is hardly the first connectivity project that Iran has tried to work out with Pakistan on board.
Pakistan's Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa has told the visiting Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif that "wider cooperation in West Asia is needed" to tackle security challenges threatening the region. Future rows between India and Pakistan will place Iran in a mediatory role. Although, a congenial relationship between both countries is imperative for regional stability, only after CPEC is managed well should Pakistan participate in the Chabahar project as it could provide Pakistan a regional "leg-up" in economic planning.
Centre pushes Finance Bill to break Parliament logjam
As soon as the House reassembled in the afternoon, some TDP and Congress members came near the Chair's podium holding placards. Naidu said "people are being impatient and (protests) show Parliament in poor light".