MOSCOW, April 4. /TASS/. Russia-Pakistan military cooperation is developing dynamically and an intense joint program has been mapped out for 2018, Russian Defense Minister Army General Sergei Shoigu said at a meeting with his Pakistani counterpart Khurram Dastgir Khan on the sidelines of the 7th Moscow conference on international security on Wednesday.
"Over the past few years, bilateral meetings have contributed to building up contacts between the Armed Forces of Russia and Pakistan in such areas as the joint drills of land troops and the navies, and also the strengthening of ties between the General Staffs. This year, our defense ministries also have an intense program of measures," Shoigu said.
The Russian defense minister said Moscow supported Pakistan’s participation in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
"We support Pakistan’s participation in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization as a full-fledged member. We expect that SCO interaction will contribute to developing and strengthening friendly ties between our defense ministries," Shoigu said.
The development of constructive relations between the two countries "is an important factor of ensuring regional stability," the Russian defense minister said.
‘We are grateful to the Pakistani side for regular participation in the Moscow conference on international security. From year to year, the forum is increasingly turning into a venue for an open and professional dialogue on a wide range of present-day problems," Shoigu said.
The Russian defense minister suggested exchanging opinions on the topical issues of bilateral military and military-technical cooperation, noting that he was glad to personally get acquainted with his Pakistani counterpart.
"I had warm and comradely relations with your predecessor. On his invitation, I visited Pakistan for the first time," the Russian defense minister said.