Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Wednesday stressed the need for close coordination between regional countries to achieve peace and stability in Afghanistan. He shared this view in separate meetings with his Russian and Chinese counterparts on the sidelines of the SCO Council of Foreign Ministers meeting in Tajikistan. In meeting with Foreign Minister of Russian Federation Sergei Lavrov, Qureshi discussed Pakistan’s constructive approach towards the Afghan peace process, a statement from the Foreign Office said. According to the statement, reiterating continued support to the process, the foreign minister emphasised close coordination between the two countries to help achieve a negotiated political settlement in Afghanistan.” The two leaders reaffirmed their strong desire to enhance bilateral relations and reviewed the implementation status of the decisions taken during Lavrov’s visit to Pakistan in April 2021. “It was agreed to work closely to further strengthen bilateral relations in all spheres,” read the FO statement. The two foreign ministers agreed to remain in contact for the mutual benefit of both countries. Later, in his meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Qureshi had an in-depth discussion on the overall regional security situation, with particular focus on the evolving situation in Afghanistan, according to the FO. The foreign minister briefed his Chinese counterpart on Pakistan’s consistent efforts to facilitate the Afghan peace process. “There was a consensus that in view of the latest situation, close coordinated approach was extremely critical to achieve peace and stability in Afghanistan,” the FO statement said. The foreign minister felicitated the Chinese foreign minister on the centenary celebrations of the Communist Party of China and reaffirmed Pakistan’s resolve to strengthen cooperation between the two countries. Qureshi remarked that Pakistan and China “are iron clad brothers”. He expressed his condolences on the tragic incident in which a bus carrying Chinese workers in Pakistan’s Upper Kohistan region plunged into a ravine following a blast which resulted in the loss of precious lives of Chinese workers and Pakistani nationals. The leaders acknowledged both countries share a common understanding on various regional and international issues and have been supporting each other on issues of core interests. The two foreign ministers agreed to continue close coordination and agreed to meet in the near future. Separately, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said the key to unlock the geo-economic potential of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) region lay in greater connectivity among the member States and proposed transition to national currencies by setting up SCO Development Bank. Addressing at the Meeting of the Council of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Foreign Ministers, the foreign minister said the collective vision of SCO would reach fruition through effective inter-SCO collaboration in connectivity and development of transport links through air, road and sea. SCO Secretary General Vladimir Norov, Director Executive Committee SCO-Regional Anti Terrorists Structures Jumakhon Giyasov, Foreign Minister of host Tajikistan Sirojiddin Muhriddin and other foreign ministers of SCO member States participated in the meeting.