Iranian President Hassan Rouhani urges Pakistan to take firm action in dealing with terrorists acting against the Islamic Republic.
In a phone conversation with Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday, the Iranian president said that Tehran and Islamabad should not allow “a bunch of terrorists,” who are tools in the hands of other countries, to affect their decades-long cordial ties.
He said the Iranian and Pakistani nations enjoyed “exemplary and historical” relations, calling on senior officials of the two countries to help promote bilateral ties.
“We should not allow any third party to impact Iran-Pakistan relations through their measures,” Rouhani said.
Pointing to last month’s terrorist bomb attack in Iran’s southeastern province of Sistan and Baluchestan, Rouhani said Tehran knows well where the terrorist groups that use Pakistan’s soil to carry out attacks against the Iranian nation were based, adding, “We are awaiting your (Pakistan’s) decisive action against these terrorists.”
“We are fully ready to cooperate with the Pakistani army and government to eradicate these terrorists whose presence is not in favor of us, you or the region,” he added.
The Iranian president emphasized that Tehran sought to keep friendly relations with Islamabad.
On February 13, an explosives-laden car rammed into a bus carrying a number of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) forces on a road between the cities of Zahedan and Khash, leaving 27 of them dead and 13 others wounded.
The so-called Jaish ul-Adl terrorist group, which is linked to al-Qaeda, claimed responsibility for the bombing.
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei denounced the bloody terrorist attack, saying the spy agencies of certain regional and extra-regional countries certainly had a hand in this crime.
“It is certain that the perpetrators of this crime were linked to spy agencies of certain regional and extra-regional countries and the country’s relevant organizations must focus on that and seriously pursue it,” the Leader said in a message.
The Pakistani prime minister, for his part, said his country’s army and government would make their utmost efforts to eliminate terrorists.
Khan added that Islamabad would not allow terrorists to use Pakistan’s soil against neighboring countries, particularly Iran.
He emphasized that the Pakistani army was ready to adopt more decisive measures to counter terrorists in cooperation with Iran and noted that Islamabad would soon give good news to Tehran in this regard.