Pakistan Russia Relation
Pakistan–Russian relations or Russo-Pakistan relations refers to the bilateral, historical, cultural, and
international relations between the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the Russian Federation. The Soviet
Union and Pakistan first established the diplomatic and bilateral relations on 1 May 1948.
For the most of the Cold War, the Soviet Union relations with Pakistan have seen ups and downs during
the different periods of Pakistan. In 1947-50s, Soviet Union enjoyed relatively healthy and strong
relations with Pakistan when it was under the civilian control but the relations went ultimately cold soon
after the U.S.-backed 1958 military coup d'état, although attempts to warm the relations were made
after the 1965 Indo-Pakistan war and in midst of 1970s, the relations were quickly improved and
In response to ongoing Soviet support to communist Afghanistan regarding the Durand Line issue during
the late 1970s and 1980s, Pakistan began to support Mujahedeen rebels attempting to overthrow the
Soviet-backed communist regime and was later supported by the United States, United Kingdom, China
and Saudi Arabia. This later led to the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan.
Due to rapidly shifting global geopolitical interests spurred by the end of the Cold War and the ongoing
U.S.-led War on Terror, Pakistani public opinion towards Russia has fluctuated in recent years, with 18%
viewing Russia favorably in 2007, falling to 11% in 2011 and rising to 20% in 2012, and according to the
BBC World Service Poll, 9% of Pakistanis view Russian influence positively in 2010, 14% in 2011, falling
to 12% in 2012, and increasing to 18% in 2013.
However, Pakistanis have generally rated Vladimir Putin's leadership poorly, with 7% expressing
confidence in him in 2006, and only 3% in 2012, and for the most part, a plurality of Russians have
consistently rated Pakistan's influence negatively, with 13% expressing a positive view in 2008,
increasing slightly to 14% in 2010, and falling to 8% in 2013.
Soviet relations with Pakistan dated back to 1922 after the Bolshevik Revolution. From 1922-27, people
who entered from Soviet Union into territory (now Pakistan) hold by British Indian Empire, attempted to
start a communist revolution against the British Empire. The series of coups known as Peshawar
Conspiracy Cases; the British Empire was terrified after the intelligence on attempted communist
revolution in India were revealed to authorities. From 1947-50 and 1965–69, the trade, educational, and
cultural exchanges between two countries increased. But the Soviet efforts were undermined by Soviet
Union by itself when Soviet criticism of Pakistan's position in the 1971 war with India weakened bilateral
relations, and many people of Pakistan believed that the August 1971 Indo-Soviet Treaty of Friendship,
Peace and Cooperation encouraged India invasion of East Pakistan. Subsequent Soviet arms sales to
India, amounting to billions of dollars on concessional terms, reinforced this argument. The USSR also
kept vetoing every resolution regarding the East Pakistan situation that Pakistan brought to the United
The Soviet Union-Pakistan relations (Russian: Союз Советских Социалистических Республик -
Пакистан) dated back to 1948 when Moscow directed a farewell message to then-Prime minister
Liaquat Ali Khan. Pakistan gained independence during the penultimate times of cold war, and the
Soviet influence on Imperial Iran had deepened, and the Russian military involvement in Afghanistan
had a long history, going back to Tsarist times in the so-called "Great Game" between Russia and Great
“Pakistan cannot afford to wait. She must take her friends where she finds them...! ”
—Liaquat Ali Khan calling the Soviet Union and China.
According to the studies conducted by the Institute of Strategic Studies (ISS), the Soviet Union did not
welcomed the partition of Bengal and Punjab, fluctuating from cool to antagonistic and hostile
relations. Moscow gave vehement criticism to United Kingdom for partitioning the region, regarded
as the "Divide and rule strategy of foreign policy of Great Britain, and had earlier labeled the Muslim
League as a tool of the British, from its very inception. Joseph Stalin and officials at Moscow did not
send any congratulatory message to Governor-General Jinnah— founder of Pakistan. Rather the Soviet
Union extended relations after the death of Jinnah, after sending the invitation to Prime minister
Liaquat Ali Khan on April 1948. During the 1947 war, Soviet Union remained neutral non-committal
attitude, while the Western countries moved the Kashmir dispute to United Nations Security Council, to
settle the dispute. The Status quo was more acceptable to India, not by Pakistan, initially influence
Moscow to vote in favor of India in 1947. During 1947-53, Pakistan was an early member of Non-
Aligned Movement (NAM) facing the challenging issues involving the economic default, internal unrest,
challenges in foreign policy, constitutional crises, and the problems at the Constituent Assembly after
the death of Jinnah. Initially, Pakistan waited to see if any nation was willing to help the country to re-
build its massive military and economic aid, and leading bureaucrat at this time, Sir Firoz Ali Khan had
If the Hindus give (us) and Pakistan, then the Hindus are her best friends. If the British give it to her then
the Brits are our best friends. If neither will give it to us the freedom..... Then the Russia is our best
—Firoze Ali Khan, 1946,
In April 1948, at the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Far East, Pakistan's foreign
officers of Pakistan announced that "she (Pakistan) would accept aid from any source", but the Soviets
did not respond to that request. In 1948, Prime minister Ali Khan made several attempts to Soviet
Union to established the relations, but Soviet remained quiet. On April 1948, Foreign minister Sir
Zafarullah Khan held talks with Deputy Foreign minister Andrei Gromyko, subjecting the diplomatic
relation. During this time, Pakistan saw relations with the Soviet Union from the prism of relations
with India just as these days it sees ties with the United States.
“ There are important divergences of outlook between Pakistan, with its Islamic background, and
the Soviet Union with its background of Marxism which is atheistic.... Pakistan had noticed the
subservience which was forced upon the allies of the Soviet Union... Furthermore, there was the
question whether Russia could supply the aid, both material and technical, which Pakistan so urgently
—Pakistan Institute of International Affairs, 1950,
However, the policy was changed after Soviet Union witnessed two events particularly forcing them to
respond to Pakistan when India decided to remain within the Commonwealth Nations, it was a clear sign
that India was leaning towards the Western countries under the U.S. auspices. The second event
was the Indian premier Jawaharlal Nehru's announcement to pay the state visit to the United States on
May 7, 1949. To a reaction, Soviet Union extended an invitation to Prime Minister, Liaquat Ali Khan, in
1949 to visit Moscow, becoming the first prime minister from the Commonwealth of Nations to visit the
communist country, but Soviet Union herself did not materialized the dates or the plans. Instead,
Prime minister Ali Khan went onto paid a state visit to United States, taking the largest diplomatic and
military convey with him, a clear rebuff to Soviet Union. According to studies completed by Pakistan
Institute of International Affairs (PIIA), the real motives, goals and objectives, were to an economic and
technical assistance. "There are important divergences of outlook between Pakistan, with its Islamic
background, and the Soviet Union with its background of Marxism which is atheistic....Pakistan had
noticed the subservience which was forced upon the allies of the Soviet Union... Furthermore, there was
the question whether Russia could supply the aid, both material and technical, which Pakistan so
urgently needed..." PIIA noted.
The relations suffered setback when members of Communist Party led by communist Faiz Ahmad Faiz,
sponsored by Major-General Akbar Khan, hatched a coup d'état against Prime minister Liaquat Ali Khan
in 1950 (See Rawalpindi conspiracy case). Soon, three years after, Prime minister Liaqat Ali Khan
assassinated while campaigning for his electoral term. During 1954-58, the relations were strained and
hostility against each other as time passes. In 1954, Pakistan became a member of SEATO and CENTO in
1955, which Soviet Union did not welcomed, overtly opting the Pro-Indian policy and regarding the
Kashmir as part of India. As a result of 1954-55 elections, Prime minister Huseyn Suhrawardy, a left-
wing prime minister, made deliberate attempts to improve relations. On March–April 1954, a delegation
of the Soviet cultural troupe toured Pakistan and a festival of the Soviet films was held in Karachi. To
reciprocate this, the Pakistan Government also sent a delegation to study the Soviet industrial and
agricultural development In 1956, Soviet premier Nikolai Bulganin offered technical and scientific
assistance to Prime minister Suhrawardy for the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, offering Soviet
contribution after Suhrawardy submitted the plan to established the nuclear power against India. In
1958, Soviet Union agreed to give Pakistan an[clarification needed] handful in aid in agriculture,
economic, science, control of pest, flood control, desalination, soil erosion and technical assistance to
Pakistan. In 1958, Pakistan and Soviet Union finally established an oil consortium, Pakistan Oilfields,
and expressing interests in establishing the country's first steel mills.
Military dictatorships (1958-1971)
In July 1957, Prime minister Suhrawardy approved the leasing of the secret ISI installation, Peshawar Air
Station, to CIA. After commencing the military coup d'état against President Iskander Mirza, Army
Commander Ayub Khan visited United States, further enhancing relations with the U.S. while at same
time, trying establishing link with Soviet Union through Zulfikar Ali Bhutto.
“Pakistan felt deceived because the U.S. had kept her in the dark about such clandestine spy operations
launched from Pakistan’s territory”
—General K.M. Arif, Chief of Army Staff.,
In 1959, Ayub Khan permitted the flights of reconnaissance and covert surveillance flights of U-2, giving
the authorization of final U-2 flight, piloted by USAF Captain Francis Gary Powers. This operation ended
violently when Soviet Air Defence Forces shot down the U-2, capturing its pilot near at the vicinity.
Overall, Ayub Khan knew of this operation, understanding the consequences and aftermath, and
shuddered his shoulders when he was notified in London, by the USAF and the CIA.
The U-2 incident severely compromised Pakistan security and worsened relations between the
Soviet Union and Pakistan, with Soviet now backing India. During this time, the Indian nuclear
programme expanded and progressed at very exponential level. As an attempt to put up a bold front,
former chief of army staff General Khalid Mahmud Arif while commenting on the incident stated that,
"Pakistan felt deceived because the U.S. had kept her in the dark about such clandestine spy operations
launched from Pakistan’s territory".
A great Soviet ire was on Pakistan, and the Soviets threatened to bomb the base if future missions were
flown from it. Soviet Union paid back its revenge on Indo-Pakistani war of 1965, emerged as the biggest
supplier of military hardware to India. India on other hand, distanced from the Western countries,
developed close relations with the Soviet Union. Soviet Union and India used the diplomacy, convincing
the U.S. and Western powers to keep a ban on Pakistan's military and hardware. After the 1965 war, the
arms race between India and Pakistan became even more asymmetric and India was outdistancing
Pakistan by far.
Role in Indo-Pakistani war of 1971
The Soviet Union played a decisive role in the 1971 Winter war, first signing the Indo-Soviet Treaty of
Friendship and Cooperation. The Soviet Union sympathized with the Bangladeshis, and supported the
Indian Army and Mukti Bahini during the war, recognizing that the independence of Bangladesh would
weaken the position of its rivals—the United States, Saudi Arabia, and China.
On 6 December and 13 December 1971, the Soviet Navy dispatched two groups of cruisers and
destroyers and a nuclear submarine armed with nuclear missiles from Vladivostok; they trailed U.S. Task
Force 74 into the Indian Ocean from 18 December 1971 until 7 January 1972. The Soviets also had a
nuclear submarine to help ward off the threat posed to India by USS Enterprise task force in the Indian
Ocean. The Soviet Navy's presence was threatening for Pakistan, with the Soviet nuclear submarines' K-
320 and Charlie, movements were picked up by the Pakistan Navy's submarines. The Pakistan Navy's
submarines Ghazi, Hangor, and Mangor had sent solid evidence of Soviet Navy's covert involvement
helping the Indian Navy, and Soviet Navy's own secret operations against the Pakistan Navy. Pakistan
Navy avoided aggressive contacts with the Soviet Navy due to possible nuclear retaliation by Soviet
nuclear submarines in Karachi. In 2012, in an official press release in Russian Consulate-General in
Karachi, the Russian ambassador remarked that former Soviet stance against Pakistan in 1971, was a
"somewhat embarrassed our relations".
Democratic government (1971-1977)
The democratic socialist alliance led by then-Prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto made an effort to
improve relations with the Soviet Union, and the for the first time in the history of Pakistan, Soviet
Union's ties with Pakistan began to warm and relations were quickly improved. Reviving his foreign
policy, Bhutto relieved Pakistan from SEATO and CENTO, breaking off the relations with the United
States under the President Jimmy Carter. In 1974, Bhutto paid a tiring and lengthy state visit to Soviet
Union, becoming the first prime minister since the independence of Pakistan in 1947. Bhutto and his
delegation was met with great jubilation, a warm-heated celebration took place after Bhutto was
received by Alexei Kosygin in Moscow. The honorary guard of honor was bestowed by the Soviet Armed
Forces, and strong interaction was made during Bhutto's democratic era. Bhutto also met with Leonid
Brezhnev where Pakistan reached agreements with Soviet Union on mutual trust, cooperation, technical
assistance, and friendship.
While there, Bhutto succeeded to convince the Soviet Union to establish the integrated steel mills,
which prompted the Soviet Union to provide funds for the billion dollar project. Prime Minister Bhutto
made a deliberate attempt to warm relations with Russia as he was trying to improve relations with the
Communist bloc. Bhutto sought to develop and alleviate the Soviet-Pak Relations, as the Soviet Union
established Pakistan Steel Mills in 1972. The foundation stone for this gigantic project was laid on 30
December 1973 by the then Prime minister Mr. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. Facing inexperience for the erection
work of the integrated steel mill, Bhutto requested Soviet Union to send its experts. Soviet Union sends
dozens of advisors and experts, under Russian scientist Mikhail Koltokof, who supervised the
construction of this integrated Steel Mills, with a number of industrial and consortium companies
financing this mega-project.
During the 1973 till 1979, Soviet Union and Pakistan enjoyed a strong relations with each other which
also benefited the Soviet Union. This interaction was short lived after the popular unrest began to take
place after the 1977 elections. With United States support, the CIA-sponsored operation codenamed
Fair Play removed Bhutto from power in 1977. The Soviet relations with Pakistan deteriorated on April 4,
1979, when Bhutto was executed by the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Earlier, Leonid Brezhnev, Alexei
Kosygin, and other members of the Politburo had sent repeated calls for clemency to CMLA General
Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq who forcefully rejected the Soviet requests. Breznev maintained the issue of
Bhutto was Pakistan's internal matter but did not wish to see him executed. When Bhutto was hanged,
Brezhnev condemned the act out of "purely humane motives".
Military dictatorship (1977-1988)
Shortly after the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan, military ruler General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq called
for a meeting of senior military members and technocrats of his military government. At this meeting,
General Zia-ul-Haq asked the Chief of Army Staff General Khalid Mahmud Arif (veteran of 1965 and 1971
war) and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Muhammad Shariff (who was made POW by
India during the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971) to lead a specialized civil-military team to formulate
a geo-strategy to counter the Soviet aggression. At this meeting, the Director-General of the ISI at that
time, Lieutenant-General Akhtar Abdur Rahman advocated for an idea of covert operation in
Afghanistan by arming the Islamic extremist, and was loudly heard saying: "Kabul must burn! Kabul must
burn!". As for Pakistan, the Soviet war with Islamist mujaheddin was a complete revenge in retaliation
for the Soviet Union's long unconditional support of regional rival, India, notably during the 1965 and
the 1971 wars, which led the loss of East Pakistan.
In 1980, the relationship took a dangerous turn, when Soviet press, notable "Pravda" and other Soviet
commentators, began to issue threatening statements towards Pakistan. Soviet Commentator, V Baikov,
went far enough to say: The axis of United States and China, is trying to secure a base for its rapid
deployment force, presumable offering F-16 fighter plans in that view." Another Soviet commentator
"threateningly" asked Pakistan that "If she (Pakistan) thought about where the United States was pulling
it in its hostilities with Afghanistan; their aggression was taking place in the vicinity of the USSR". In
February 1980, a delegation of TASS in New York maintains that, "One can see the contours of
dangerous plans aimed at Pakistan's arch rivals— India, Soviet Union, and Afghanistan. The change of
administration in 1980 and immediate verbal threat of Soviet Union to Pakistan, brought the United
States and Pakistan on a six-year trade, economic and military agreement, valuing approximately ~32.5
billions US dollars.
The U.S. viewed the conflict in Afghanistan as an integral Cold War struggle, and the CIA provided
assistance to anti-Soviet forces through the ISI, in a program called Operation Cyclone. The siphoning off
of aid weapons, in which the weapons logistics and coordination were put under the Pakistan Navy in
the port city of Karachi, contributed to disorder and violence there, while heroin entering from
Afghanistan to pay for arms contributed to addiction problems. The Pakistan Navy coordinated the
foreign weapons into Afghanistan, while some of its high-ranking admirals were responsible for storing
the weapons in the Navy logistics depot, later coordinated the weapons supply to Mujaheddin, out of
complete revenge of Pakistan Navy's brutal loss and defeat at the hands of Soviet Navy in 1971.
In November 1982, General Zia traveled to the Soviet Union to attend the funeral of Leonid Brezhnev,
then-General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Soviet President Andrei Gromyko
and the new Secretary-General Yuri Andropov met with Zia where a brief meeting took place at the
Kremlin. The Soviet Union and the new Secretary General Yuri Andropov were angry at Pakistan's covert
involvement in the support of Afghan resistance against the Soviet Union and her satellite state, Soviet
Afghanistan, and expressed his indignation to the General. Then General Zia took his hand and told him
that, "Mr. Secretary General... Believe me, Pakistan wants nothing but good and healthy relations with
the Soviet Union". According to Andrei Gromyko, Zia's sincerity had caught off guards and in the
meeting, everyone believed him but sadly found out that his words were not followed by his actions.
Ironically, Zia directly dealt with the Israel, working to build covert relations with Israel, allowing the
country to actively participate in Soviet war in Afghanistan. Helped by ISI, the Mossad channeled Soviet
reversed engineered weapons to Afghanistan. In Charlie Wilson's own word, Zia reported to have
remarked to Israeli intelligence service: "Just don't put any stars of David on the boxes".
Democratic governments (1989-1991)
Mothers of Soviet soldiers meeting at the Pakistani Embassy, Moscow appealing to the Bhutto
government for rescuing Soviet soldiers from captivity. It was not until 1992 when the Sharif
government released the details of soldiers.
Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto (daughter of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto) authorized further aggressive military
operations in Afghanistan to topple the fragile communist regime and to end the Soviet influence. One
of her military authorizations was a military action in Jalalabad of Afghanistan in retaliation for the
Soviet Union's long unconditional support of India, a proxy war in Pakistan, and Pakistan's loss in 1971
war. This operation was "a defining moment for her [Benazir's] government" to prove the loyalty to
Pakistan Armed Forces. This operation planned by then-Director General of the Inter-Services
Intelligence (ISI) Lieutenant-General Hamid Gul, with inclusion of U.S. ambassador to Pakistan Robert
Oakley. Known as Battle of Jalalabad, it was intended to gain a conventional victory on Soviet Union
after Soviet Union had withdrawn its troops. But the operation failed miserably and the Afghan army
supported by Soviet scuds won the battle resulting in ISI chief being sacked by the Prime Minister.
At the end years of Cold War, Soviet Union announced to established a 1000MW commercial nuclear
power plant in Pakistan, but after witnessing its aging technology Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, later
followed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, did not authorized the purchase and showed any interests in
aging Soviet technology.
In 1992, Prime minister Nawaz Sharif released the details and company of Soviet soldiers to the Russian
government when Alexander Rutskoy visited the country, after meeting in a committee led by Deputy
Foreign Minister of Pakistan, Shahryar Khan.
Fall of Communism and the 21st century
Pakistan—Russian Federation relations
17 Sadovaya-Kudrinskaya street Moscow, Russia, where the Embassy of Pakistan located.
After the Soviet Union troop withdrawal withdrawing the combatant troops from Communist
Afghanistan, relations began to normalize with Pakistan. In the wake of fall of communism, Russian-
Pakistan relations were warmed rapidly. In 1989, Soviet ambassador to Pakistan offered Pakistan to
install a commercial nuclear power plant in the country, however after the U.S. intervention the plans
were sent into cold storage. In 1994-95, Benazir Bhutto attempted to warm the relations with Russia but
suffered a major setback with Benazir Bhutto's government recognized Taliban-controlled government
in Afghanistan as a legitimate government. In 1996, Russia willingly agreed to launch Pakistan's second
satellite, Badr-B, from its Baikonur Cosmodrome for the lowest possible charges.
Pervez Musharraf shakes hands with Vladimir Putin (left), 2002.
In 1997, Prime minister Nawaz Sharif attempted to warm the relations with Russia after sending farewell
messages to Russian Federation. In 1998, although Russian congratulated India for conducting second
nuclear tests, (see Pokhran-II), Russia did not immediately criticized Pakistan for performing its nuclear
tests (see Chagai-I and Chagai-II) in the end week of May 1998. On April 1999 Prime Minister Nawaz
Sharif paid an important state visit to Kremlin, this was the first trip to Moscow paid by a Pakistan's
Prime minister in 25 years, however no breakthrough in this was made. In 1999, Russia welcomed
Pakistan and India for making a breakthrough in their relations after proceeding the Lahore Declaration,
but vehemently criticized Pakistan for holding Pakistan responsible for the outbreak of Indo-Pakistani
War of 1999. During this time, Russia played a major role in ending the war but remained hostile
Russia condemned the military coup d'état against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in 1999 to remove the
prime minister from power. On 19 April 2001, the Russian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Alexander
Losyukov paid a state visit to Pakistan where both countries agreed upon cooperating in economic
development, and to work towards peace and prosperity in the region. In the wake of September 11,
2001 attacks, the relations were warmed rapidly when Pakistan denounced the government of Taliban
and joined the NATO coalition to hunt down the Jihadist organizations and al-Qaeda. The decision of
Pakistan to join the international struggle against terrorism has led to Russia-Pakistan relations being
greatly improved. Russia also played an integral role to ease off the nuclear 2001 Indo-Pakistan tensions.
Improvement in relations
“ We must know where we deceived ourselves to avoid being deceived again.... Russia is one of our
closest neighbors... And (could) be an important partner. ”
Dmitry Medvedev (right) meeting Asiff Zhardari (left) in 2010.
Russia vowed its support for Pakistan as Pakistan fight against the Taliban militants. In 2007, the
relations between Pakistan and the Russian Federation were reactivated after the 3-day official visit of
Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Fradkov. He was the first Russian prime minister to visit Pakistan in the
post Soviet-era in 38 years. He had "in-depth discussions" with President Pervez Musharraf and Prime
Minister Shaukat Aziz.
Dmitry Medvedev engaged in conversation with Asif Zardari, 2010.
The major focus of the visit was to improve bilateral relations with particular emphasis on ways and
means to enhance economic cooperation between the two countries. Under the Presidency of Asif Ali
Zardari and Prime Minister Yousef Raza Gilani, relations between Pakistan and Russia have improved
significantly. In 2010, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin of Russia stated that Russia was against developing
strategic and military ties with Pakistan because of Russia desire to place emphasis on strategic ties with
Hina Kharr meeting with Russian deputy foreign minister A.N. Borodavkin, 2012.
In 2011, Russia changed its policy and Putin publicly endorsed Pakistan bid to join the Shanghai
Cooperation Organization and said that Pakistan was a very important partner in South Asia and the
Muslim world for Russia. Putin offered Russia's assistance in expansion of Pakistan Steel Mills and
provision of technical support for the Guddu and Muzaffargarh power plants and Russia was interested
in developing the Thar Coal Project In 2011, Russia strongly condemned the NATO strike in Pakistan and
the Russian foreign minister stated it is unacceptable to violate the sovereignty of a state, even when
planning and carrying out counter-insurgent operations. In 2012, Russian president Vladimir Putin
announced to pay a state visit to Pakistan soon after his re-election, later he cancelled it, citing other
crucial engagement. To offset the diplomatic setback caused by this unexpected cancellation of much-
anticipated visit, Putin’s sent his Foreign Minister Sergey Viktorovich Lavrov.
Meanwhile, Pakistan army chief general Ashfaq Parvez Kayani visited Moscow from October 4 for three-
day official visit. Where he was received warmly by Defence Minister Anatoly Serdyukovand Russian
Ground Forces Commander-in-Chief (C-in-C) Colonel General Vladimir V Chirkin.
On 5-August-2013 Colonel General Vladimir V Chirkin visited Pakistan where he was received by General
Ashfaq Parvez Kayani. The two generals discussed matters of mutual interest with emphasis on
improving defence cooperation, army-to-army relations the security situation in the region, especially in
Afghanistan post 2014.
Pakistan and Russia wrapped up their first strategic dialogue on 31-August-2013. At the talks held at the
foreign secretaries’ level in Moscow, the Pakistani side was led by Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani and
Russia’s First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Vladimir Gennadievich Titov led his side. Russian Deputy
Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov also participated in the consultations.The dialogue, the Foreign Office
says, lays an institutional framework for building closer relations between the two countries through
discussions for cooperation in political, economic, defence and other sectors. The two sides exchanged
views on regional and international developments. Broadly, Pakistan and Russia agreed for more high-
level contacts, closely coordinating positions on regional and international issues, and expanding trade
and investment relations and cooperation in the field of energy and power generation.
Economic and Geopolitical Convergence
In 1990, Benazir Bhutto of Pakistan sent fare well message to Moscow to set up the economic
coordination between two countries. In 1991, Benazir Bhutto drove the high-level economic delegation
to Central Asia and Russia after the collapse of Soviet Union.
Senior military officials and Defence Attaché of Pakistan and Russia, jointly working together at the
communications tent at the Nigerian Air Force Base.
In 2003, the bilateral trade between Russia and Pakistan reached to 92 million US dollar, which
increased to 411.4 million in 2006. The bilateral trade between each country reached to 630 million in
2008 and ~400 million in 2009. During this following year, both countries established the "Russian–
Pakistan Intergovernmental Commission on Trade and Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation to
cooperation in science and technology and education.
In 2011, Prime minister Yousaf Raza Gillani and Vladimir Putin held a frank discussion in a cordial
atmosphere on 10th Heads of Government meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation. Russia is
currently financing the megaenergy project, CASA-1000, transmitting the power generation from
Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan to Pakistan; the Russia has provided 500Mn US dollars for the
CASA-1000 for the power transmission project. In 2011, both countries initiated the work on the
framework n the proposed Free Trade Agreement and currency swap arrangement to boost bilateral
trade and further strengthen their economic ties.
In 2012, Russia and Pakistan has covertly developed geopolitical and strategic relations behind the
scenes of world politics for the last two years, as Stephen Blank of Strategic Studies Institute maintained.
As the NATO-led ISAF and the US Forces, Afghanistan Command, is planning to depart Afghanistan in
2014, the Russian Federation came to a conclusion that Pakistan is a crucial player in Afghanistan and
that, as NATO withdraws, it becomes all the more urgent for Moscow to seek some sort of modus
vivendi with Islamabad.
The world's first bilingual Urdu-Russian dictionary was compiled and launched by Pakistan-based Russian
scholar Dr. Tashmirza Khalmirzaev in 2012 at a ceremony in Islamabad. Khalmirzaev said the dictionary
aimed to "help speakers of both languages come closer." He also added that a new era was dawning in
Pakistan’s relationship with Russia and other Central Asian states and encouraged the government of
Pakistan to continue work in promoting the Urdu language in Russia and Central Asia.
On 13 January 2013, in a poll in seven countries managed by the Washington Post, to see whether the
people of those seven countries prefer democratic government or one with a "strong" leader. Most
Russian and Pakistani voted that "they prefer a "strong ruler" over democracy.
Literature and art
The Pakistani literature, both in English and Urdu, is widely popular in Russia. Many of Faiz Ahmad Faiz's
drama work, poetry, and literature work has been translated in Russian language. The Lenin Peace Prize,
a Soviet equivalent of Nobel Peace Prize, helped lift Faiz's image even higher in the international
community. The Russian government honored Faiz with one of the prestigious award, Lenin Prize, and
Russian government dubed him as "our poet" after his death.
The dramatist and playwright, Anwar Maqsood's work has been widely well receive in Russia and
majority of his dramas have been translated and opted in Russian dramas and writes. Russian writer,
Anton Chekhov, is widely celebrated in Pakistan. The Karachi University has a Karachi Russian Culture
Centre that completely dedicated to the various Russian writers. In 2010, the Punjab University laid the
foundation of Russian cultural centre in Lahore as well. In 2010, Russian Culture Centre in Karachi in
collaboration with the National Academy of Performing Arts staged Chekhov's play "The Proposal" at the