Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has expressed his expectation that Pakistan will support Kyiv on any forthcoming UN resolutions concerning Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.
The top Ukrainian diplomat, who arrived in Islamabad on Thursday for a two-day visit and met with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, called Pakistan a “friendly country” in an interview with local broadcaster Dawn News that aired Friday night.
The visiting diplomat said during his “very candid conversation” in meetings in Pakistan, he brought up the issue of Islamabad’s support for his country.
“Ukraine’s expectation is that Pakistan will be voting in favor of resolutions, defending Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty and also aiming at restoring just and lasting peace in Ukraine,” he said.
Islamabad, a longtime ally of the West in the latter’s lingering confrontation with Moscow, including the now-defunct USSR invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, currently maintains a “neutral” position on the Russia-Ukraine war.
Although Islamabad has repeatedly called for respecting Kyiv’s sovereign integrity and sent humanitarian aid to the war-torn country, it has refused to condemn Moscow’s action.
Islamabad has three times abstained from voting on a UN General Assembly resolution condemning the “Russian invasion of Ukraine.”
Kuleba was the first Ukrainian Foreign Minister to visit Pakistan since the two countries established diplomatic relations in 1992.
It is believed that his visit to Islamabad was part of his efforts to rally the support of nations that have remained neutral on the Russian-led war.
“We believe that Pakistan is also the country that respects territorial integrity,” he added.