Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister (FM) Ishaq Dar has said Pakistan’s geostrategic location offers an ideal trade and transit hub for the SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organization) region.

He was addressing SCO Council of Foreign Ministers meeting in Astana, Kazakhstan on Tuesday. The Foreign Minister highlighted the significance of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) for regional connectivity and economic integration.

He reiterated Pakistan’s firm adherence to the SCO Charter and explained its priorities as Chair of SCO Council of Heads of Government including promotion of connectivity, transport links, youth empowerment, poverty alleviation, and enhanced practical cooperation among SCO states.

Ishaq Dar called for upholding international law and the UN Charter with special emphasis on peaceful settlement of longstanding disputes in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions.

He warned against bloc-based and confrontational geo-politics and advocated for a multipolar world grounded in multilateralism.

The Deputy Prime Minister emphasized combating terrorism through collective and cooperative approaches by addressing its root causes. He urged rejection of myopic and self-serving interests to use the mantra of terrorism for political gains.

Ishaq Dar reaffirmed Pakistan’s firm call for an unconditional and urgent ceasefire in Gaza and unhindered provision of humanitarian assistance. He also emphasized the need to realize the two-State solution for durable peace and stability.

On Afghanistan, Ishaq Dar called on the international community to meaningfully engage with the Interim Afghan Government for the country’s development and for ensuring that Afghan soil is not used for terrorism against any country.