Benaulim : Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari arrived in Goa on Thursday afternoon to attend the Foreign Ministers' meeting of the SCO member states.
Zardari, the first Pakistani foreign minister to visit India in almost 12 years, said he looks forward to constructive discussions with his counterparts from friendly countries. "I am happy to arrive in Goa for participating in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation. I am leading the Pakistan delegation at SCO and hope that the SCO Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) will be successful," Zardari said in a video shared by Pakistan's Ministry. spokesperson of Foreign Affairs.
The Pakistan minister was received by Indian diplomat JP Singh (Joint Secretary, Pakistan-Afghanistan-Iran desk)
In 2011, then Pakistan foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar visited India.
Earlier today, Zardari said he is leading his country's delegation to the SCO Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) meeting in Goa. Zardari said his decision to attend the meeting underlines Pakistan's strong commitment to the SCO charter.
"On my way to Goa, India. Will be leading the Pakistan delegation at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization CFM. My decision to attend this meeting illustrates Pakistan's strong commitment to the charter of SCO," Bilawal tweeted a video ahead of his departure from Karachi.
"During my visit, which is focused exclusively on the SCO, I look forward to constructive discussions with my counterparts from friendly countries," Zardari said.
The Pakistan politician is attending the SCO conclave at the invitation of External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar.
Meanwhile, China's Foreign Minister Qin Gang arrived earlier today in Goa to participate in the SCO conclave. He is slated to have a bilateral with EAM Jaishankar later today.
The Chinese Foreign Minister was received by Shilpak Ambule, Joint Secretary, East Asia.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov who is also in the city was accompanied by a delegation is scheduled to hold a bilateral with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar.
Lavrov is also expected to have several bilateral meetings with his counterparts from other SCO countries.
The theme of India's Chairmanship of SCO in 2023 is 'Secure-SCO'. India attaches special importance to SCO in promoting multilateral, political, security, economic and people-to-people interactions in the region. The last meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization was held in Samarkand, Uzbekistan.