| GEO Pakistan|
| U.S. appeals to China to help stabilize Pakistan|
| Updated at: 0927 PST, Monday, May 25, 2009|
WASHINGTON: The Obama administration has appealed to China to provide training and even military equipment to help Pakistan counter a growing militant threat, U.S. officials said.
According to Los Angeles Times, the proposal is part of a broad push by Washington to enlist key allies of Pakistan in an effort to stabilize the country. The U.S. is seeking to persuade Islamabad to step up its efforts against militants, while supporting the fragile civilian government and its tottering economy.
Richard C. Holbrooke, the administration's special representative for Pakistan and Afghanistan, has visited China and Saudi Arabia, another key ally, in recent weeks as part of the effort.
The American appeal to China underscores the importance of Beijing in security issues. Washington considers China to be the most influential country for dealing with isolated, militaristic North Korea. Beijing also plays a crucial role in the international effort to pressure Iran over its nuclear ambitions.
China traditionally has been reluctant to intervene in the affairs of other countries.
However, Chinese officials are concerned about the militant threat to its west, fearing it could destabilize the region and threaten China's growing economic presence in Pakistan.
U.S. officials believe China is skilled at counterinsurgency, a holdover of the knowledge gained during the country's lengthy civil war that ended with a communist victory in 1949. And with its strong military ties to Pakistan, U.S. officials hope China could help craft a more sophisticated strategy than Islamabad's heavy-handed approach.