Iran and Pakistan to form joint rapid reaction force at border: Rouhani

Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan is visiting Iran on his first official visit that will include talks on countering terrorism

The prime minister of Pakistan Imran Khan went on his first official visit to Iran this Sunday after the two countries have been feuding in the past month after terror attacks in both states.

"Killing of 14 innocent Pakistanis by terrorist groups based in Iran is a very serious incident that Pakistan protests strongly".

The February suicide bombing attack killed 27 members of the Revolutionary Guards in Iran's Sistan-Baluchistan province.

Prime Minister Imran Khan met Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at the Presidential Palace in Tehran on Monday, Radio Pakistan reported.

The future force, which was announced by the two leaders during a joint media conference after a meeting, is meant to boost border security and foster bilateral ties.

The Chinese Ambassador said there is complete understanding between Pakistan and China that the CPEC is fruitful for both the countries.

"The first time I came here was in the 1970s".

The victims were not initially identified and it was speculated they could be Shia Muslims and ethnic workers from Punjab, but later it emerged that they were security personnel, majority associated with the Pakistan Navy.

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In March 2018, a foreign journalist was deported for trying to cover the same subject said to be off limits for journalists. RSF said there were around 40 verbal and physical attacks on journalists in the region over the last 18 months.

Islamist as well as ethnic Baloch separatists operate in Balochistan, Pakistan's poorest province. The Baloch Raji Aajoi Saangar (BRAS) umbrella group said it targeted Pakistani navy and Coast Guard officials travelling on buses.

The Foreign Office said the Prime Minister's visit to Iran will further the close bilateral relationship between the two countries. Qureshi said he spoke to his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif, and conveyed to him the "anger of Pakistani nation". "This is not in any way helpful for anyone". He explained that in addition to deploying additional forces and helicopter surveillance, Pakistan already has begun fencing the "most vulnerable" portions of the border with Iran.

"It is a vast area and the control over the area is hard, it makes it easy for groups to be active on both sides", he said.

"We agreed to set up a barter committee so that the goods and needs of the two countries can be exchanged and a barter account is created", said Rouhani, adding that plans were in the works to link the two countries new deepwater trade ports of Gwadar and Charbahar by rail.

The prime minister said if the Kashmir issue is settled the entire Indian subcontinent will benefit from it and in that case Iran can reach the Indian and Chinese markets through the Pakistani soil. Saudi Arabia has denied any involvement.

During a meeting of high-ranking delegations of Iran and Pakistan, Rouhani said that a new chapter has been opened in Iran-Pakistan relations by Khan's visit to Tehran.

"Whether it can be achieved or not, that is to be seen". "That is one of the reasons why Imran Khan has gone, to keep this clear".

Asad Hashim is Al Jazeera's digital correspondent in Pakistan.

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