China firmly stands with Pakistan

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ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday discussed the grave and rapidly worsening situation in Indian Held Kashmir (IHK) with visiting Vice Chairman of Central Military Commission (CMC) of China General Xu Qiliang, who assured that China stands with Pakistan.

It was agreed during the meeting that Pakistan and China would continue to closely consult and coordinate for the promotion of peace and stability in the region and maintenance of strategic balance.

Imran Khan stressed the need of lifting curfew in IHK forthwith and impressed upon India to allow international human rights NGOs to visit IHK to have an objective assessment of the humanitarian tragedy unfolding there.

The CMC vice chairman met Imran Khan at the Prime Minister’s Office and conveyed him the message of Chinese president and prime minister that China stands by with Pakistan.

The prime minister underscored that the brutal suppression of human rights in IHK had the potential to spark a wave of extremism and India’s reckless actions could destabilise the region immeasurably.

General Xu is leading a high-level delegation to Pakistan to discuss issues of mutual interest for Pakistan and China. During the meeting, Imran Khan underlined the unique quality of the time-tested, Pakistan-China all-weather strategic cooperative partnership, describing it as an anchor for peace and stability in the region and beyond. The prime minister highlighted India’s illegal and unilateral actions of August 05, the continuing indefensible lockdown of millions of Kashmiris in IHK for three weeks, dire human rights and the humanitarian situation there, and the threat to peace and security posed by India’s actions. The prime minister also underlined that India could stage a false flag operation to divert the world’s attention from its crimes.

The prime minister thanked China for supporting Pakistan’s approach to the UNSC, following India’s unilateral and illegal actions and the ongoing humanitarian crisis. He reiterated that the curfew in IHK must be immediately lifted and the international human rights NGOs allowed visiting IHK to have an objective assessment of the humanitarian tragedy unfolding there. The prime minister also underscored that the brutal suppression of human rights in IHK had the potential to spark a wave of extremism and India’s reckless actions could destabilise the region immeasurably.

General Xu Qiliang conveyed cordial greetings of President Xi Jinping, as well as that of Premier Li Keqiang and reaffirmation of China’s full support to Pakistan, particularly at this crucial juncture. Underscoring the importance of the time-tested China-Pakistan strategic partnership, he conveyed the Chinese leadership’s commitment to the time-honoured tradition of both countries supporting each other on issues of core national interest. He reiterated Beijing’s resolve to work for further strengthening China-Pakistan ties in a broad range of areas. Vice Chairman Xu underlined that the South Asia region needed stability and economic development and resolution of outstanding disputes and appreciated Pakistan’s efforts in advancing those goals.

Meanwhile, President Dr Arif Alvi expressed regard for China’s defence cooperation and support on issues of its national security. The president was talking to General Xu Qiliang, who called on him here at the Aiwan-e-Sadr.

He acknowledged unique, all-weather and time-tested China-Pakistan friendship and China’s support for Pakistan at multilateral forums, particularly at the United Nations Security Council in the wake of India’s illegal and unilateral steps in IHK.

Meanwhile, General Xu Qiliang along with his delegation visited Naval Headquarters and called on Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi.

Upon arrival at the Naval Headquarters, General Xu Qiliang was received by Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi. A smartly turned out contingent of the Pakistan Navy presented him guard of honour. The dignitary laid floral wreath at the Shuhada’s Monument and was then introduced to the principal staff officers at Naval Headquarters.

General Xu Qiliang called on Chief of the Naval Staff at his office. During the meeting, matters of mutual interest were discussed. Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi highlighted that close relationships between the people and the armed forces of the two countries are time-tested and based on mutual respect and trust. The naval chief expressed satisfaction over various ongoing naval projects between the two naval forces.

The admiral also thanked the Chinese General for wholehearted participation of PLA (Navy) with ships and special forces/marine teams in multinational naval exercise AMAN-19. The CMC vice chairman highly appreciated the successful conduct of the exercise AMAN-19. General Xu Qiliang termed Pakistan as China’s all weather strategic partner. On CPEC, which is a vital part of Belt and Road Initiative, both sides expressed their full confidence and termed it as a project aimed at prosperity and economic empowerment of people of the region and beyond. Both the dignitaries also agreed on further enhancing bilateral cooperation in the domains of military collaboration.

A briefing was also given to the visiting dignitary on the Pakistan Navy’s perspective on security situation in Indian Held Region and Pakistan Navy’s contributions towards peace and stability in the region.

In the second leg of the visit, the CMC vice chairman is scheduled to visit the Pakistan Navy Field Commands at Karachi. The visit is expected to greatly augment bilateral cooperation between both the countries in general and defence forces in particular.

General Xu Qiliang also visited Air Headquarters. On his arrival, the distinguished guest was received by Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan, Chief of the Air Staff.

A smartly turned out contingent of Pakistan Air Force presented guard of honour to the visiting dignitary. He laid floral wreath on the martyrs monument to pay homage to the martyrs of PAF. Later on, General Xu called on the Air Chief in his office.

Various matters of mutual interest, bilateral cooperation and regional security were discussed in the meeting. Both leaders showed their satisfaction on the existing enviable cooperation between PAF and PLAAF, and reiterated their resolve to take this cooperation to further heights.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan telephoned Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and discussed the latest developments in IHK. According to the Saudi Press Agency, the two leaders discussed latest developments in the region. The crown prince was briefed by Imran Khan on the latest developments in IHK.

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