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DATE PUBLISHED: 1398/11/26 - 10:17:0
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Erdogan visits Pakistan in bid to reduce its dependence on Saudi Arabia


In this handout picture taken and released by Pakistanís Prime Minister Office (PMO) on February 14, 2020, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (L) meets with Pakistanís Prime Minister Imran Khan in Islamabad. (Photo by AFP)

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has concluded his two-day visit to Pakistan. As many as 13 bilateral agreements were signed between the two countries mostly in fields of transportation, energy, tourism, healthcare, education, and law enforcement. During the visit, Erdogan vowed to increase existing bilateral trade from less than one billion to over five billion US dollars by 2023. This comes as part of Ankaraís attempt to reduce Pakistanís overgrown economic dependence on Saudi Arabia which has troubling ties with Turkey, Qatar and Iran.

Erdoganís visit has come at the heel of controversy over Pakistanís decision to skip its participation in a summit of Muslim countries like Turkey, Malaysia, Qatar and Iran in Kaulalumpur. Erdogan had disclosed that Islamabad skipped the summit under threats from Saudi Arabia to expel millions of Pakistani workers from the Kingdom.

Reports indicate that Riyadh suspected Islamabad was joining a new alliance of Islamic countries to stand against Saudi-dominated Organization of Islamic Cooperation or the OIC. The OIC has done little to end killing spree of Palestinians at the hands of Israel and atrocities by Indian military against Muslims in the disputed Kashmir region.

Unlike Saudi Arabia, Turkey has fully supported Islamabadís stance on the disputed Kashmir region which under UN Security Council resolutions must be resolved between Pakistan and India through a plebiscite.

Pakistan is believed to have been uncomfortable with Saudi Arabia over its lack of support on the disputed Kashmir region which India forcibly annexed in last August in defiance of UN Security Council resolutions. Since then Islamabad has been looking for viable economic options to reduce its financial dependence on Saudi Arabia.

 


SOURCE: PRESS TV

LINK: https://www.ansarpress.com/english/13993


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