Prime Minister Imran Khan has thanked Russian President Vladimir Putin for his ’empathetic’ response to blasphemous statements against the Holy Prophet (PBUH) during a telephone call on Monday.
“He is the first Western leader to show empathy [and] sensitivity to Muslim sentiment for their beloved Prophet PBUH,” the premier wrote in a statement on Twitter.
President Putin had previously addressed inflammatory and derogatory statements against the Holy Prophet (PBUH) during a speech in December, during which he said insulting the Holy Prophet (PBUH) was a ‘violation of religious freedom‘ and an affront to the ‘sacred feelings of people who profess Islam.’
During the phone call, the two leaders also discussed matters related to trade, energy, and other issues tied to ‘mutually beneficial cooperation.’ He added that the two leaders had extended invitations to visit each others’ countries.
“The prime minister underscored that Pakistan’s bilateral relationship with Russia was on an upward trajectory with an increased focus on trade, economic ties and energy cooperation. He reiterated the government’s resolve for the early realisation of the Pakistan Stream Gas Pipeline Project,” said a statement released from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) following the phone call.
The statement also acknowledged the “appalling rise in he appalling rise in Islamophobia and associated hatred,” which the prime minister highlighted in his speech to the United Nations General Assembly in 2020.