Chinese top diplomat Yang Jiechi’s visit to Pakistan reaffirms all-weather strategic cooperative partnership between the two countries after Shehbaz came into office, Hu Zhiyong, a research fellow at the Institute of International Relations of the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, told Global Times.
China always puts China-Pakistan relations a priority in neighboring diplomacy, and is willing to strengthen coordination with Pakistan on multilateral affairs and safeguard the common interests of developing countries, said top Chinese diplomat Yang Jiechi during a meeting with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in Islamabad.
“China views Pakistan as an iron-clad friend and reliable brother and China-Pakistan mutual trust and friendship remain solid as a rock no matter how the international landscape changes”, said Yang, who is a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the CPC Central Committee.
China regards the bilateral relations as a priority in neighboring diplomacy, and is willing to work with Pakistan to further strengthen communication and strategy coordination to maintain the traditional friendship, and enhance strategic mutual trust, deepen pragmatic cooperation in construction of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), join hands to build closer China-Pakistan community with a shared future, Yang noted.
Yang said China appreciates Pakistan’s support for the Global Security Initiative and Global Development Initiative and stands ready to work with Pakistan to implement the initiatives so as to make Asia and the world more peaceful, secure and prosperous. PM Shehbaz said developing relations with China is the cornerstone of Pakistan’s foreign policy.
Pakistan firmly pursues the One-China principle and supports China in safeguarding its core interests and major concerns. It proves that China-Pakistan ties won’t change along with government reshuffles and strong ties between the two nations bring regional stability and peace in the turbulent era, Hu said.
“The Pakistani government and people thank China for its long-term selfless assistance and are ready to learn from China’s successful experience in economic development and the fight against COVID-19”, Shehbaz said, adding that China has bright prospects for development, and no force can hold back China’s development and growth.
Pakistan is ready to work with China to deepen practical cooperation in various fields, speed up the construction of the CPEC and push the all-weather strategic cooperative partnership to a new height, Shehbaz said. The communication between the two countries’ leaders further deepens bilateral cooperation on CPEC, a flagship project under the Belt and Road Initiative, Hu noted.
In their meeting, Yang also conveyed greetings from Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang to Shehbaz. Shehbaz also asked Yang to deliver his greetings to the Chinese leaders.
Recalling the recent visit of tri-services delegation to China led by the Chief of Army Staff, the Prime Minister expressed satisfaction at the expanding defense and security cooperation between Pakistan and China, which is contributing to regional peace and stability, according to a statement by the Pakistan Embassy in Beijing to the Global Times.
Besides, both Yang and Shehbaz agreed to further strengthen cooperation in safeguarding regional security and counterterrorism.
In their meeting, Shehbaz reiterated his strong condemnation of the Karachi terrorist attack and underscored Pakistan’s determination to bring the perpetrators to justice. He reaffirmed Pakistan’s commitment to enhanced measures for safety, security and protection of Chinese nationals, projects and institutions in the country.
Pakistani Ambassador to China Moin ul Haque also told the Global Times in a recent interview that Pakistan is working together with China and upgrading the security and working together on a new, enhanced security plan together.
Haque noted that Pakistan and China are aware of these threats coming from external forces that attempt to undermine China-Pakistan friendship. “We are working together to destroy these forces who are against our future.”
The two also exchanged views on the situation in Afghanistan including the humanitarian and economic crises. The need for international cooperation and unfreezing of assets to avert a humanitarian catastrophe and ease the misery of the Afghan people was underscored, the statement from the embassy reads.
They also signed a slew of MOUs and protocols including works of G2G joint technical working group for realignment of Karakoram Highway from Thakot to Raikot in Pakistan.