Foreign Minister Marise Payne on Monday contacted her Pakistani counterpart Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and discussed the whole range of issues relating to bilateral relations and regional cooperation including return of Pakistani students to Australian universities.
Foreign Minister Qureshi appreciated the steady progress in multi-dimensional bilateral relations over the years which is based on mutual trust and understanding.
“Pakistan has a strong desire and commitment to consolidate and further enhance cooperation with Australia in diverse fields in line with our shared objectives of peace and development”, said a statement issued by the Foreign Office of Pakistan.
Foreign Minister Qureshi also took up the issue of Pakistani students enrolled in different Australian Universities who have not been able to travel to Australia due to Covid-19 restrictions and sought Australia’s cooperation to facilitate their early return.
Ms Payne informed her Pakistani counterpart that Australia is looking forward to the future return of Pakistani students after double vaccination.
The two foreign ministers discussed their respective support to Afghanistan as Foreign Minister Payne said that both Australia and Pakistan have common interests in addressing the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.
Foreign Minister Qureshi briefed his counterpart on Pakistan’s constructive role in support of efforts for peace and stability in Afghanistan.
He underscored the importance of inclusion, continued engagement of the international community with Afghanistan, and urgent coordinated steps for mobilization of much needed humanitarian and economic assistance for Afghanistan.
The Australian Foreign Minister conveyed profound gratitude for Pakistan’s facilitative role in safe evacuation of their nationals and others from Afghanistan and reciprocated the desire for further strengthening of bilateral relations.
While expressing satisfaction on the current level of engagement, the two Foreign Ministers agreed on further enhancing high-level interactions.