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Pakistan, Russia sign 'milestone' military cooperation pact

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Russia on Thursday entered into an agreement pertaining to the strengthening of defense cooperation between the two states and sale of military equipment, ARY News reported.

Russian Defense Minister, Sergey Shoigu who is currently on a visit to Pakistan along with a 41-member delegation, signed the agreement here on Thursday.

“The signing of the military cooperation agreement between the two significant countries of the region is a milestone,” Asif said after the signing ceremony in a ministry statement.

“Both sides will translate this relationship in tangible terms and further strengthen military to military relations,” Asif added.

The pair expressed hope that the agreement will pave the way for exchange of views and information, as well as issues related to strengthening of mutual trust and international security, counter-terrorist and arms control activities.

“The first ever visit of the defense minister from Russian Federation has come at a very critical juncture when US led NATO forces are drawing down from Afghanistan by the end of 2014,” the statement said.

“Apart from promoting bilateral defense relations, the visit will enable both countries to join hands in bringing peace and stability in the region,” it added.

Russia has long been the largest supplier of arms to India, the nuclear-armed arch rival of Pakistan, which is the world’s top arms buyer.

However, both Pakistan and Russia have recently been working to enhance defense cooperation and to re-evaluate ties with each other, which was promoted by India siding with the United States (US).

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