Pakistan and Iran Exchange Positive Messages After Border Clashes

Pakistan and Iran have expressed their desire to resolve all issues through positive dialogue and cooperation, after a series of cross-border attacks that escalated tensions between the two neighboring countries.

The Foreign Office Spokesperson, Mumtaz Zahra Baloch, shared a cordial exchange of letters between the Additional Foreign Secretary, Rahim Hayat Qureshi, and his Iranian counterpart, Seyed Rasoul Mousavi, on her X handle, saying: “Some positive exchanges.”

Qureshi wrote that he reciprocated the sentiments of “dear brother Seyed Rasoul Mousavi” and reaffirmed the fraternal relations between Pakistan and Iran. He said it was important to restore trust and confidence that had always defined the bilateral ties between the two countries. He also stressed the need for coordinated action against the common challenges of terrorism.

Mousavi, in his letter, said he believed that the statement of Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs was the endpoint of the prevailing tensions between the two countries. He said that the leaders and high officials of both countries knew that only the terrorists and enemies of both countries would benefit from the existing tension. He wrote on X in Persian that he hoped for the continuation of friendly and brotherly relations between the two countries.

The exchange of positive messages came hours after Pakistan launched strikes on terrorist hideouts inside Iran on Thursday, in a retaliatory attack two days after Iran violated Pakistan’s sovereignty by launching a strike in Balochistan that killed two children and injured three girls.

The Pakistan Army said in a statement that the hideouts used by the terrorist militant organisations, namely Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) and Balochistan Liberation Front (BLF), were successfully struck in an intelligence-based operation, code named — “Marg Bar Sarmachar” or “Death to the Guerrilla Fighters”.

The BLF denied having any hideouts in Iran and said no BLF fighters were killed in the attacks. The BLA has not yet commented on the strikes.

Iran said it had only targeted Iranian terrorists on the soil of Pakistan and that no Pakistani nationals were targeted. Iran claimed it was targeting the strongholds of the Sunni militant group Jaish al-Adl, known in Iran as Jaish al-Dhulm, or Army of Justice, which has previously claimed responsibility for attacks against Iranian targets.

Iran’s deputy governor of Sistan and Baluchistan province, Alireza Marhamati, said that 10 people were killed in the Pakistani strikes, which he described as explosions in a border village and near the city of Saravan.

Meanwhile, Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar, who was in Davos to attend the meeting of the World Economic Forum, cut short his visit to return to the country. He summoned separate meetings of the federal cabinet and the National Security Committee (NSC) on Friday to discuss the situation arising out of the Pak-Iran tension.

The cabinet reviewed the scenario in the backdrop of the strikes and airspace violation by Iran. It was also briefed on the border situation and operational preparedness and the briefing of the Foreign Office spokesman given to the media on Thursday. The cabinet also discussed matters with regard to preparations for the February 8 elections.

The NSC meeting, attended by Cabinet members who are members of the Committee, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, three services chiefs, Director General Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), held consultations on the current situation on the Pak-Iran border. Some important decisions were expected with regard to the country’s internal and external security.

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