ISLAMABAD, Sep 19 (APP): Italian Minister for Defence Roberta Pinotti Monday praised Pakistan’s role and initiatives for peace in the region.

She expressed these views while talking to Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif, who called on him along with a delegation in the Ministry of Defence, Rawalpindi.

Khawaja Asif said Pakistan attached great importance to its relations with Italy.

He mentioned that the MoU on Defence Cooperation ratified in 2013 would lead to greater collaboration between the two countries, said a press release issued here.

The minister said Pakistan was fighting against terrorism and it could get benefit of Italy’s military experience, which is an important member of NATO.

He underlined the need for exploring ways and means in the field of joint defence production and to have regular exchange of high level visits between both the countries.

Khawaja Asif gave an overview regarding methodological approach of Pakistan in clamping down the terror networks under the National Action Plan.

He said Pakistan believed in “Afghan led and Afghan owned peace process,” and was ready to play a positive role in the reconciliation process, mentioning that Pakistan had deployed 202,000 troops along the western border which showed its sincere efforts against the terror networks.

He also talked about the Indian ceasefire violations and their effects on Pakistan’s sincere efforts against terror networks.
Khawaja Asif highlighted the growing imbalance between India and Pakistan’s conventional capabilities, and the ongoing Indian atrocities in occupied Kashmir and increasing intolerance towards the minorities.