Pak PM calls Sheikh Hasina, urges closer ties with Bangladesh

Islamabad: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday expressed his desire for building “closer and fraternal” relations with Bangladesh.
Khan said this during a rare telephone conversation with his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina Wajed, Dawn News reported.
“Pakistan is committed to deepening fraternal relations with Bangladesh on the basis of mutual trust, mutual respect and sovereign equality,” the Prime Minister was quoted as saying.
The telephone call came after months of efforts to normalise ties between the two South Asian countries after years of deep freeze.
Islamabad’s initiative for mending fences with Dhaka started after the current high commissioner Imran Siddiqui assumed office in February this year and earlier this month met Bang¬ladesh’s Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen.
Pak-Bangladesh relationship took a nosedive after Wajed began her second term as the prime minister in 2009 and she restarted the war crime trials of 1971.
Wajed’s father and Ban¬gladesh’s founding father Mujibur Rehman had after the tripartite agreement of 1974 agreed that in the interest of regional peace, no one would be put on trial for alleged crimes committed during the 1971 war.
Khan, in his conversation, underscored the importance Pakistan attached to closer ties with Bangla¬desh and highlighted the significance of regular bilateral contacts and people-to-people exchanges.
He also reaffirmed Pakistan’s commitment to SAARC and underlined the importance of both countries working for enhanced regional cooperation for sustainable peace and prosperity.
Khan discussed Pakistan and Bangladesh’s fight against COVID-19 pandemic and extended commiserations on the material and human losses due to the recent flooding in Bangladesh.
He also reiterated the invitation to Prime Minister Wajed to visit Pakistan.