China reaffirms support for Pakistan in war against terrorism


BEIJING: China on Friday reaffirmed its continuing and firm support for Pakistan in war against terrorism, saying both the countries are steady anchors for peace in the region.

Addressing a joint press conference with Pakistan foreign minister Khawaja Asif in Beijing, Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi emphasised that China fully backs Pakistan in its fight against terrorism and supports its neighbour in safeguarding its sovereignty.

The relationship between China and Pakistan remain rock firm and unbreakable, Wang said, adding that China will continue to play its role in Pakistan's progress and development.

The Chinese foreign minister asserted that China respects Pakistan's interests, and said there is a need to acknowledge Pakistan's efforts in countering terrorism.

"Pakistan is an important participant in fight against global terrorism," he said, pointing out that Pakistan has given many sacrifices in the war on terror. 

Wang said peace in Afghanistan remains in interests of both China and Pakistan. "China wants improved relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan," he said. 

Khawaja Asif, addressing the press conference, thanked China for its "unflinching support for Pakistan" in the war against terrorism and its commitment to Pakistan's progress and development. 

He said the relations between China and Pakistan are exemplary and are based on history, mutual trust, equality, harmony, non-interference and common agenda of socioeconomic development.

Asif said Pakistan deeply values China's support for Pakistan's territorial integrity and asserted Pakistan's support for One China policy and China's interests in Taiwan and South China sea.

Pakistan and China consult each other on all global issues, Asif remarked.

On US President Donald Trump's revised policy towards Afghanistan war, Asif said there was no military solution to the Afghan conflict.

On China's commitment to Pakistan's development, Asif called the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor a "flagship project" and vowed action against any threat to the project. 

Asif reached Beijing Friday evening on a state visit to China to hold discussions on bilateral relations and matters of mutual interest in terms of regional and international strategies.

Top officials of the Chinese Foreign Ministry welcomed Asif as he arrived at the airport accompanied by Lieutenant General (retd) Nasser Janjua — Pakistan's national security adviser.

During his visit, Asif will also be holding important talks with other leaders of the country, according to a press briefing by Geng Shuang — the spokesperson for Chinese Foreign Ministry.

Pakistan and China — the all-weather strategic partners — have seen their relationship grow with sound momentum, based on frequent high-level exchanges and fruitful outcome of practical cooperation.

With regard to Asif's visit, Shuang said it is another important event that will further help implement the cooperation consensus reached between the two leaders. He said the deep and practical cooperation —especially in terms of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) — would enhance coordination and communication on international and regional fronts.

Asif is visiting China at the invitation of the Chinese foreign minister.