Pakistan and Russia on 20 November 2014 signed a defence and military cooperation agreement aimed at bringing peace and stability in the region.
The pact was signed by Pakistan Defence Minister Khawaja Asif and his Russian counterpart General Sergey Kuzhugetovich Shoygu in Islamabad, Pakistan.
The defence agreement covered wide range of subjects including Pakistan’s plans to acquire Mi-35 gunship helicopters and other military equipment from Russia.
The agreement was signed during the visit of the Russian Defence Minister General Sergei Kuzhugetovich Shoigu to Pakistan. The visit was the first visit of a Russian Defence Minister in Pakistan in 45 years. The last visit took place as far back as 1969, when USSR Defence Minister Andrey Grechko visited Pakistan.
Besides, the two ministers also held talks focusing on strengthening defence cooperation between the two countries and stressed the need for continuation of momentum gained during the Moscow conference.
Other highlights of the visit
Pakistan sought to enhance bilateral trade ties with Russia and added that Russian companies can take advantage of investment opportunities in infrastructure and energy sectors in Pakistan.
It also sought Russian cooperation in Pakistan getting full-fledged membership of Shanghai Cooperation Organization.
The Soviet Union (Russia) and Pakistan first established the diplomatic and bilateral relations on 1 May 1948. For the most of the Cold War, the Soviet Union relations with Pakistan have seen ups and downs during the different periods of Pakistan.
In 1947-50s, Soviet Union enjoyed relatively healthy and strong relations with Pakistan when it was under the civilian control but the relations went ultimately cold soon after the U.S.-backed 1958 military coup. In the mid 1970s, the relations were quickly improved and warmed.
This first ever visit of the defence minister from Russian Federation came at a very critical juncture when US-led NATO forces are drawing away from Afghanistan by the end of 2014 and points towards the gradual improvement in ties between the former Cold War adversaries.
Who: Pakistan and Russia
When: 20 November 2014
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