‘Russia would support Pak-Iran gas pipeline’

gas-pipelines-IranRussia would consider supporting the Pakistan-Iran gas pipeline project if Pakistan sought its help, a senior Russian diplomat said on Saturday.

Talking to The Express Tribune on the sidelines of a conference organised by the Voice of Russia at the South Asian Free Media Association office here on Saturday, Russian Embassy Political Counselor Vladimir Shreter said Pakistan was a sovereign state and it should take decisions independently. He said ties between Pakistan and Russia would improve in the coming days. “Russian President Vladimir Putin didn’t cancel his visit to Pakistan, rather he just postponed it due to some engagements. He is eager to meet President Zardari at some other place,” he said.

He said Russia didn’t want to become just another donor for Pakistan, rather it wanted to engage Pakistan in mutually-beneficial areas. He said both countries wanted cordial ties.

Earlier, MNA Naseer Bhutta, addressing the conference, said the ice between Russia and Pakistan was melting. He said the two governments should take steps to improve bilateral ties. He said Pakistan could benefit from Russian assistance in several fields.

The Voice of Russia is an international multimedia broadcasting service sponsored by the Russian government. It broadcasts a programme in Urdu every day and has many listeners across Pakistan. The VoR organised the conference to interact with its listeners for the first time in Lahore.

VoR South Asia head Irina Maksimenko, speaking in fluent Urdu, said an agreement between Pakistan and Russia to run VoR transmissions on FM radio could be signed in the near future.

VoR presenter Mujahid Mirza also addressed the conference.

Fahd Younis, president of the Listeners Club in Layyah, talking to the Tribune said, “I have been listening to VoR since 2007. Their programmes are very informative and entertaining. I have learnt the basics of the Russian language through the VoR Urdu service. Their programme Mashal-i-Raah guides youth on different issues. We get to learn a lot about Russian culture through their Urdu broadcasts.”

By The Express Tribune


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