Qureshi terms his four-nation tour ‘shuttle diplomacy’

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Thursday termed his four-nation tour as “shuttle diplomacy” and said Pakistan is committed to building a strong, connected and prosperous neighbourhood. Taking to Twitter, the foreign minister said, “Shuttle Diplomacy: Reaching out to regional partners in order to foster greater understanding and cooperation between all stakeholders. Pakistan is committed to building a strong, connected and prosperous neighbourhood.” FM Qureshi had embarked on a whirlwind four-nation tour on December 23. During the first leg of his trip, Qureshi had visited Kabul where he met Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani. During his meetings, the foreign minister stressed the importance of peace in Afghanistan for regional stability and renewed Pakistan's commitment to assist in the process. After Afghanistan, Qureshi visited Tehran where he met his counterpart Javed Zarif and other top officials of the Iranian Foreign Ministry and discussed strengthening cooperation and bilateral relations. In the third leg of this tour, Qureshi met his Chinese counterpart Wang Xi in Beijing. The two discussed "bilateral and regional issues, especially peace in Afghanistan", according to Foreign Office Spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal. On Wednesday, Qureshi held a meeting with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov on his trip to Moscow, his last stop on a his four-nation tour. The ministers held in-depth talks on various bilateral and regional issues, including recent developments concerning the Afghan peace process. The two sides "agreed to continue efforts, including through Moscow Format of Consultations, for supporting reconciliation under an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process", a press release issued by the Foreign Office said. Don't understand point of whirlwind tour: Khar Meanwhile, former foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar said she does not understand the point of the whirlwind four-nation tour. Speaking on Geo News programme Geo Pakistan, the former foreign minister said, “At this time, no achievements can be seen on the foreign policy front.” “If Qureshi took a look at the earlier foreign policy then it would have been helpful for him. Foreign policies should not be on an emergency basis,” she added. Further, Khar demanded, “Parliament should be informed regarding the aims of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) foreign policy.”

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