ISLAMABAD - Russia-Pakistan Joint Military Consultative Committee (JMCC) in its first meeting held at the Ministry of Defence in Rawalpindi on Tuesday discussed the present status of their bilateral defence relations with the aim to further strengthen, expand and diversify mutual cooperation.

Prior to the inaugural meeting, the visiting dignitary called on Secretary Defence and Defence Minister.

During the inaugural session of the JMCC, both sides exchanged views on bilateral and major international issues including situation in the Middle East and Afghanistan.

A comprehensive issue based review was also carried out during which the two countries expressed satisfaction on the milestones achieved since the signing of ground breaking Agreement on Defence Cooperation in 2014.

The two sides also held in depth discussions on avenues of future cooperation. At the end, both countries signed the Contract on Admission of Service Members of Pakistan in RF’s Training Institutes.

During the visit, the Russian Deputy Defence Minister is also scheduled to meet Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee and the three Service Chiefs.

Meanwhile, the Russian Deputy Minister for Defence, Colonel General Alexander V Fomin held separate interactions with Chief of Army General Qamar Javed Bajwa and Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan and exchanged views on regional security situation and matters of mutual interest, including enhancement of bilateral defence and security cooperation.

Colonel Fomin also called on Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi at Naval Headquarters, Islamabad.

During the meeting detailed discussions on bilateral defence collaboration in diverse fields were held.

The visiting dignitary lauded the commitment and performance of Pakistan Navy in maintaining peace and stability in the regional maritime domain, a statement issued here by Directorate of Public Relations of Pakistan Navy. Earlier, upon arrival at the Naval Headquarters, Deputy Minister of Defence of the Russian Federation was received by Chief of the Naval Staff. A smartly turned out contingent of Pakistan Navy presented guard of honour. Thereafter, Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi introduced the visiting dignitary to the Principal Staff Officers.

It is expected that the visit will further enhance defence collaboration and strengthen defence ties between the two countries in general and Navies in particular.