Pakistani and Russian special forces during joint exercise in Druzhba, Russia, on September 25, 2017. © Russian Defense

Following the weakened influence of the USA in Pakistan, the latter develops its military, political and economic relations with Russia. This could lead to historic cooperation in the region and the opening of the gas market to Russian companies.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov and his Pakistani counterpart, Tasnim Aslam, co-chaired the meeting of the Pakistan-Russia Consultative Group on Strategic Stability in Islamabad on March 2, 2018.

In particular, the two sides discussed important issues concerning arms control, disarmament and the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction as well as aspects of the current international agenda and mutual interests.

While in Islamabad, Ryabkov was received by Pakistan’s Deputy Prime Minister Tehmina Janjua. They expressed their satisfaction with the positive dynamism of bilateral dialogue as well as practical cooperation at the international level.

Pakistani Foreign Minister Khawaja Mohammad Asif, who is visiting St Petersburg on February 20, met with Alexey Miller, the CEO of Gazprom. The two sides discussed the prospects for bilateral cooperation, including the continuation of joint military exercises that began in 2016. As part of these exercises, the Pakistan Army had acquired the Mi-35 attack helicopters, JF-17 fighter jets as well as Russian Sukhoi fighters.

With the support of Russia and also China, Pakistan has joined the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. As part of this organization, Pakistan and Russia collaborate on military and security plans. On the background of tensions between Moscow and Washington, the last military maneuver between the Russian and Pakistan special forces, called Druzhba 2017, took place in September 2017 in the Karachai-Circassian Republic of the North Caucasus.

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