Russia's Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov will discuss relations between Pakistan and India, Afghanistan problems and matters associated with combating terrorism during his upcoming visit to the Pakistani capital, Islamabad. This news was related by Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Losyukov in an interview given on this occasion to Pakistani and Indian media. "We have what to discus with Pakistan," the Russian diplomat assured.
According to Losyukov, Moscow is concerned above all with "the contradictions in relations between India and Pakistan." Russia would like to "understand better the roots of the problems in the region, express its view and call on both sides to display restraint and seek ways of finding solutions to these difficult problems through negotiations," he stressed.
Besides, the Russian side intends to raise the Afghanistan issue at the Islamabad talks. Pakistan has long been deeply involved in the Afghan situation and Russia, for its part, pays much attention to the processes going on in Afghanistan, said a high-ranking official of the Russian Foreign Ministry. In his view, the situation arising in relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan and problems emerging in regard to Pakistan's policy in Afghanistan are "very important." Combating terrorism will be a serious item at the talks. According to Losyukov, vigorous actions by radical Islamic organizations in Pakistan affect the situation in Afghanistan and the Indian-Pakistani relations as well. And it is of concern to Moscow, because the increased activity of these organizations is felt also on Russia's territory, in Chechnya, the Deputy Minister stressed. "The militants operating in Chechnya were trained in the camps located on Pakistani territory at the border with Afghanistan. This situation continues to be a source of our concern," the Russian diplomat said.