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German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas arrived in Islamabad on Thursday on an official visit. The European diplomat was welcomed by Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on his arrival at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

In a meeting, the two ministers discussed issues of mutual interest including the challenges posed by the coronavirus, bilateral relations, situation in the region and the Afghan peace process.

“When I met with German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas in Berlin, we had a detailed discussion on bilateral relations,” said Qureshi.

“Before leaving for Afghanistan, the German foreign minister deems it necessary to know Pakistan's point of view,” he said. “We discussed in detail the situation after the Biden administration announced the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan.”

“Pakistan wants a peaceful and stable Afghanistan,” the FM reiterated. “Peace in Afghanistan will bolster ties in the region and make construction and development possible,” said the minister.

“We, under Afghan leadership, want a lasting political solution to the Afghan problem through a comprehensive dialogue acceptable to the Afghans.”

The foreign minister also appreciated the visit from his German counterpart to Pakistan during the coronavirus pandemic.

Qureshi also thanked the visiting minister for sending extra doses of the coronavirus vaccine to Pakistan.

Read more Pakistan to receive 15m Covid-19 jabs under Covax by May: Qureshi

The visit comes merely weeks after Foreign Minister Qureshi’s own official visit to Germany from April 11 to April 13. During the visit, the two ministers carried out delegation-level talks.

Foreign Minister Heiko Maas last visited Pakistan in March 2019. This year, Pakistan and Germany are celebrating the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two nations. Both countries are planning to undertake a number of activities in this context.

Pakistan and Germany have been collaborating closely on regional matters and at the multilateral fora. Germany is the largest trading partner of Pakistan in the EU. Germany is also home to more than 100,000 Pakistani diasporas.

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