‘Time to turn a new leaf’: Pakistani envoy en route to Tehran as tensions simmer

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Pakistani envoy en route to Tehran as tensions simmer

ISLAMABAD, JAN 26: Pakistan’s ambassador to Iran Muhammad Mudassir Tipu is en route to Tehran over a week after he returned to Pakistan, briefly halting diplomatic ties with the neighbouring country.

The envoy, on X — formerly Twitter, said he will return to the Islamic Republic to resume his duties. While his counterpart Reza Amiri Moghaddam will return to Pakistan today, sources told Geo News.

The Iranian ambassador to Pakistan left for Iran on January 16, the same day when Tehran launched a surprise attack in Balochistan claiming to target a militant outfit late at night.

The Pakistani envoy’s statement confirming his return, however, comes at a time when both countries are trying to bring their relations back to normalcy in the wake of a brief but aggressive episode of cross-border tensions.

Earlier this week, the two countries mutually agreed that their ambassadors would return to their respective posts by January 26, 2024.

In a joint statement issued on Monday, the Foreign Office said that at the invitation of Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani, his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir Abdollahian will undertake a visit to Pakistan on January 29.

Taking to X, formerly Twitter, Ambassador Mudassir said he is en route to return to the Iranian capital in “conformity with the sincere and good wishes of Pakistan’s leadership”.

“Ever more determined to work for a more robust, stronger & peace-loving [Pakistan],” added Tipu, who returned to Islamabad on January 17 following the attack by Iran.

Commenting on the significance of a peaceful relationship between Islamabad and Tehran, Ambassador Mudassir further stated that a strong Pakistan and Iran are “critical for region & to promote historic people to people ties”.

“Time to turn a new leaf,” he wrote in his post on X.

In response to Iran’s attack, termed “unprovoked” by the Foreign Office, the Pakistani military targeted terrorist hideouts inside the Iranian border a day and a half later on January 18.

Pakistan’s retaliation killed several terrorists during the intelligence-based operation — codenamed “Marg Bar Sarmachar” by the military.

Iran’s attack, on the other hand, left two children dead and injured three girls, stating that it violated the country’s sovereignty.

Pakistan, on January 17, also withdrew its ambassador from Iran and announced that it would not allow the Iranian envoy visiting his home country at that time to return to protest at a “blatant breach” of its sovereignty after Tehran said it launched missile attacks on militant bases in southwestern Pakistan.