Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that Pakistan is considering purchasing arms from Russia. Giving an interview to the Russian news agency, Sputnik, Khan discussed the prospects of developing relations with Moscow while expressing his hopes from the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit.
While talking about military cooperation with Russia, Khan said,
We have developed cooperation with Russia between our defense forces. I think our defense personnel has already met. And so, yes, we hope to deepen our contacts.
Imran Khan said that in the cold war era, Pakistan was close to the US and India was friends with the Soviet Union. Both countries were in different camps.
“Now things have changed. India is also friendly with the United States, and Pakistan is also friendly with the US. So we no longer have the Cold War situation. It is refreshing that we have developed our contacts with Russia, and they are developing all the time,” said the premier.
On the question of import of Russian weapons, the premier was affirmative. He said that both militaries are in contact in this regard. Reportedly, the Russian military has announced that its troops will hold military exercises with the Pakistani forces later this year.
Khan also said in this interview that he intends to visit Russia and hopes to meet the Russian leadership in the SCO meeting taking place on Friday.
The premier further added, “Russia is an energy-surplus country. Pakistan has shortages in energy, so we hope to talk on those areas. Apart from defense, we want to also improve our trade in other areas with Russia.”
“We hope our trade delegations will soon go to Russia. We will invite Russian trade delegations here, get them opportunities to invest in Pakistan. I do believe that there is a Russian steel company, which is looking to invest in our steel mill in Karachi. In fact, it was made by Russia,” he said.