Donald Trump and Imran Khan hold a meeting on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York on Monday. AFP
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Tuesday Donald Trump had asked him to mediate with Iran to defuse tensions, though the US president later suggested it was Khan who approached him and nothing was final.
Khan met Trump and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on the sidelines of this week's United Nations General Assembly, before which he visited Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Saudi Arabia, whom he said had made the same request.
"Trump asked me that if we could de-escalate the situation and maybe come up with another deal," Khan told reporters at the gathering of world leaders in New York.
"Yes, we did convey this, and yes, we're trying our best," he said.
"I immediately spoke to President Rouhani yesterday after the meeting with President Trump. I can't say anything right now more than this, except that we're trying and mediating," he added.
In Saudi Arabia, which was hit earlier this month by attacks on its oil infrastructure blamed on Iran, the crown prince "also asked me to talk to the Iranian president," Khan said.
Speculation has been rife about a possible face-to-face between Trump and Rouhani on the sidelines of the general assembly, with France's Emmanuel Macron trying to broker what would be a historic meeting.
At a separate briefing to reporters where Trump spoke on Iran, he said: "They would like to negotiate. It certainly makes sense but we haven't agreed to that yet."
Asked about Macron's involvement, he responded: "He's also talking to us, a number of people are.
"So is Prime Minster Khan of Pakistan. A lot of people, Chancellor Merkel just now, Chancellor Merkel, and she's very much involved, we have a lot of people involved. A lot of people would like to get us to the table."
But pressed on whether he had asked Khan to get involved, Trump said: "Well, he'd like to do that and we have a very good relationship and there's a chance that that could happen.
"But no I haven't spoken -- he actually asked me, he thought it would be a good idea to meet and we're here, we're in New York together and we have the time to do it, although we've done a lot of bilats in the last two days."
Pakistan traditionally has strong relations with Saudi Arabia but also maintains ties with Iran, with Islamabad representing Tehran's consular interests in the United States in the absence of diplomatic relations.
The leaders of France, Germany and Japan were all also meeting Rouhani and Trump at the UN in hopes of reviving diplomacy.
The potential sale will support US foreign policy and national security "by protecting US technology through the continued presence of US personnel that provide 24/7 end-use monitoring," the statement announcing the Pakistan approval read.
"We are to become a great nation, but not by begging,” said Imran, addressing the people who gathered at the Islamabad International Airport to welcome him back home after three-day visit to the United States in the wee hours of Thursday.
This would be Imran's second visit to the US. In July, he held a one-on-one meeting with Trump, reports The News International.
The Ministry of Health and Prevention, MoHAP, on Saturday said it carried out 77,640 additional COVID-19 tests in the country over the last 24 hours, using the latest testing methods.
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The flag-hoisting ceremony was also held at the Pakistan Consulate General in Dubai on the occasion of the 74th Independence Day. The ceremony was held in a manner keeping in view the local laws on social gatherings due to COVID-19.