Pakistan sends humanitarian aid to Ukraine

The government of Pakistan's Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has sent humanitarian aid to Ukraine, demonstrating a break with the pro-Russia stance shown by his predecessor.

Roughly 7.5 tons of relief goods, including blankets and medicine, were loaded onto a transport aircraft at an airbase in Rawalpindi near the capital Islamabad on Thursday. The plane is scheduled to arrive in Poland, Ukraine's neighbor, on Friday.

Ukrainian Ambassador to Pakistan Markian Chuchuk expressed his gratitude to the country for "standing with Ukraine." He said Ukraine considers the assistance a manifestation of goodwill, partnership and sympathy toward the Ukrainian people.

Pakistan's Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar said the country supports all efforts to provide humanitarian relief to civilians in affected areas.

Sharif launched his government in April. His policy of supporting Ukraine is in stark contrast to the pro-Russia posture of former Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Khan met Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on February 24, the same day Russia launched the invasion.

Pakistan also abstained from a vote on a draft resolution condemning Russia at an emergency session of the UN General Assembly in March.