LAHORE Punjab Chief Minister, Shahbaz Sharif has said that Pakistan and Iran are brotherly Islamic countries bound together in strong religious, cultural and linguistic ties. He said joys and sorrows of the people of both countries are common. He said that Iranian people have made remarkable progress in all sectors through their commitment and hard work despite difficult conditions and sanctions. He said that if European countries can form European Union, a joint parliament and common currency for the progress and prosperity of their peoples why can Pakistan, Iran, Turkey and other Muslim countries not do so? He was addressing a reception arranged at Chief Ministers Secretariat in connection with 31st anniversary of Iranian revolution, here Thursday. Iranian Ambassador Mashallah Shakari, Iranian Consul General Saeed Khurazi, Members National and Provincial Assemblies, provincial ministers, intellectuals, ulema of various schools of thought. He said that Iran was the first who recognize Pakistan after its creation; however. He said that there is a need for cementing trade and economic relations between the two countries. He said it is an honor for the people of Lahore that it has been declared the twin city of Mashhad and Isfahan. He said that Lahore is also the city of a great intellectual and poet who is known by the people of Iran as Iqbal Lahori. He said that Iranian impact on the fine arts of Pakistan is an important element of the intellectual and cultural heritage of Pakistan. Congratulating Iranian people on behalf of Punjab government and the people of Punjab on the 31stst anniversary of Iranian revolution, the Chief Minister said this historic event reflects the success of Iranian nation in the struggle against oppression and tyranny. He said that Iranian people shook of 2500 years old imperial rule under the inspiring leadership of a saintly figure 31 years ago and the whole world still admires this great achievement of Iranians. He said that Iranian women are taking an equal part with men in all sectors of human life and Iran has practically proved that half of the countrys population cannot be sidelined if the objective of development is to be achieved. The Chief Minister also prayed for a long and eternal friendship between Pakistan and Iran. The Iranian Ambassador in Pakistan, Mashallah Shakiri said that there are strong fraternal ties between Pakistan and Iran which are strengthening with the passage of time. He said that people of the two countries are very close to each other. He said that Allama Iqbal is a great philosopher poet and Iranian nation seeks guidance from his teachings. He said that it can also be said that Iranian revolution is a practical reflection of the poetry of Allama Iqbal. Later, Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, Iranian Ambassador Mashallah Shakiri, Consul General Saeed Khurazi and other guests cut the cake of 31stst anniversary of Iranian revolution. Earlier, Iranian Ambassador met Chief Minister Punjab and exchanged views on cooperation in different sectors. The Chief Minister said that Iran and Pakistan can launch joint ventures in coal energy, dairy farming and other sectors.