Islamabad, 4 May 2023 (TDI): Today, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the Foreign Minister of Pakistan, is scheduled to lead the Pakistani delegation to the Council of Foreign Ministers meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in India.
This visit marks the first trip to India by the highest-ranking official of the Pakistani foreign office in seven years, presenting both countries with a chance to improve their relationship and build some amicable ties, particularly considering their nuclear capabilities.
Minister for External Affairs Dr. S. Jaishankar of India, who also serves as Chair of the SCO Council of Foreign Ministers, has extended an invitation for a visit.
The visit of the Foreign Minister is essential to fostering better ties between the two nations. It demonstrates Pakistan’s adherence to the SCO Charter and its protocols. It also emphasizes the country’s preference for the region in its foreign policy priorities.
The visit additionally illustrates Pakistan’s desire to promote regional amicability and tranquility and contribute positively to the region’s growth. It’s likely to inspire Pakistan and India to work together more effectively on regional and global issues.
The meeting of the SCO Council of Foreign Ministers offers Pakistan and India a crucial forum for productive discussion on a range of subjects of shared interest, such as trade, investment, regional security, intercultural interaction, and counterterrorism.
Both nations are members of the SCO, which offers a framework for its members to engage constructively and debate mutually practical concerns. Expectations are high for improving ties between the two countries after Foreign Minister Bilawal visits India.
This summit will allow the two countries to explore new collaboration channels and build a bridge to collaborate in multiple sectors. Both countries have taken considerable measures to improve bilateral relations in recent years.
A noteworthy milestone in 2019 was the inauguration of the Kartarpur Corridor, which allowed Sikh pilgrims from India to visit a sacred location in Pakistan without needing a visa. Additionally, since February 2021, the two nations have maintained a ceasefire along the Line of Control (LoC), easing tensions.
The SCO conference will enable the two nations to advance their efforts to deepen bilateral ties and build on these encouraging advancements.
After seven years, the most senior Pakistani diplomat is finally making his way to India, offering a rare opportunity for the two nuclear-armed neighbors to finally put their tense history of strained relations behind them.
The presence of Pakistan’s Foreign Minister in India provides a possibility for engagement, which can assist in bridging the trust gap and get the two countries closer to addressing decades-old issues.
Pakistan’s dedication to the region’s peace, stability, and prosperity is evident in the visit. The hate and mistrust that have characterized relations between Pakistan and India for years will be replaced by this visit in a new chapter.