Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi telephoned his Japanese counterpart Taro Kono to apprise him of the reasons for the postponement of his official visit to Japan.
“I was scheduled to depart for Japan on February 24 on your invitation in keeping with the continuous and improved relations between the two countries following last year’s Pakistan visit of important Japanese officials,” the foreign minister was quoted as telling his Japanese counterpart.
“Unfortunately the security and peace situation in South Asia has become complex in the aftermath of the Pulwama attack,” he added.
“The situation in occupied Kashmir is extremely sensitive,” the foreign minister continued.
“I have written to the United National secretary general to play his role in easing tensions and also request Japan to play an active role to do the same.”
“In view of this sensitive situation, it is pertinent for me to remain in my country,” the foreign minister said.
“Owing to these reasons, I had to postpone my visit,” Qureshi further told Kono.
The two foreign ministers agreed to schedule meetings and a date for Qureshi’s visit at the earliest after mutual consultations.
Qureshi further asked his Japanese counterpart to apprise his premier regarding the reasons for the postponement of his visit.
Qureshi was scheduled to hold important discussions and meetings with various Japanese dignitaries including Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Foreign Minister Taro Kono.
He was also set to deliver a speech at Japan Institute of International Affairs and interact with Japanese intelligentsia.
Japan, a key economic partner of Pakistan, has made important contributions in supporting Pakistan’s development efforts over the years.
It was expected that the visit would provide an opportunity to both sides to discuss bilateral relations in detail as well as issues of regional and global importance