Iran urges cooperation with Pakistan to counter US

Iran on Sunday urged Muslim nations to forge closer cooperation to counter the US policy of seeking to create division among them.

“The US’ dishonest, duplicitous and divisive policy towards Muslim countries, including Iran and Pakistan, requires that they bolster cooperation against the US in addition to maintaining vigilance and taking preventive measures,” Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, was quoted as saying by Iran’s state-owned Press TV.

Shamkhani made the remarks during a meeting with National Security Adviser Nasser Khan Janjua, whose country has recently come under criticism by US President Donald Trump.

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“We will not allow some countries to affect relations between the two countries through sending weapons and hiring terrorists to create insecurity on their borders,” Shamkhani said.

Recalling the historical and civilisation relations as well as the many cultural and religious ties between the two countries, Shamkhani highlighted the importance of the expansion of relations and cooperation for mutually reinforcing in various fields, especially against common threats.

“Activating mechanisms for bilateral cooperation and designing joint procedures, in accordance with the changing components of threats, is one of the immediate measures that should be taken seriously by the relevant agencies in the two countries,” highlighted the Iranian official.

For his part, Janjua said that Pakistan will expand cooperation with Iran in security and economic areas.

Janjua also said Islamic countries should raise awareness to counter foreign plots which are being hatched to spread division among the Muslims.

“Pakistan will strengthen its security and economic cooperation with the Islamic Republic of Iran,” he reiterated.

“Islamabad welcomes new areas created for developing joint economic, commercial and trade cooperation,” he added.

Shamkhani also criticised the US new national security strategy (NSS), saying it will spread insecurity and instability in the world.

The remarks by the Iranian security chief came two days after Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif said that he sees his country’s alliance with Washington as over after the US suspended security-related aid to Pakistan and levelled charges against Islamabad.

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“We do not have any alliance,” with the US, Khawaja Muhammad Asif said in an interview. “This is not how allies behave.”

In announcing the strategy, Trump also targeted China and Russia.

Referring to China, together with Russia, as rival and revisionist powers, Trump sharply criticised China for challenging American power.

The United States’ severe allegations immediately sparked a backlash from China. The Chinese Foreign Ministry reprimanded the United States for “malicious slander.”

The NSS laid forward the Trump administration’s harshest stance toward China since Trump took office in January last year.

Singling China out for 33 mentions, the report bluntly criticized China for seeking to “challenge American influence, values, and wealth,”  “attempting to erode American security and prosperity,” and using “technology, propaganda, and coercion to shape a world antithetical to” U.S. interests and values.

Specifically, the NSS claimed that “China seeks to displace the United States in the Indo-Pacific region, expand the reaches of its state-driven economic model, and reorder the region in its favour.”

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