Pak-China partnership to ensure regional peace: Aziz

Source: Published in Foreign Affairs on Wednesday, April 6, 2016

ISLAMABAD: The Prime Minister’s Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said on Tuesday said the all-weather strategic partnership between Pakistan and China was an anchor for regional peace and stability.

He was talking to Zhang Chunxian, Member of the Politbureau of the Communist Party of China.

Enhancement of cooperation between the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region and Pakistan, including at the provincial level, was discussed.

Mr Zhang said the two countries were joined by land, mountains and rivers.

He reiterated China’s unflinching support to Pakistan’s sovereignty, national security and territorial integrity.

The Chinese leader lauded Pakistan’s efforts in combating terrorism and acknowledged its sacrifices.

Reiterating commitment to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), he said it was a flagship project of President Xi Jinping’s ‘One Belt-One Road’ initiative to which the Chinese leadership attached great importance.

Mr Zhang said the CPEC would be of mutual economic benefit to the people of both countries as well as the region.

He emphasised the importance of realising the full objective of an agreement on road transportation among Pakistan, China, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan.

He also highlighted the importance of setting up industrial and science and technology parks in Pakistan which could attract large investment from enterprises in Xinjiang

Mr Zhang also visited the GHQ and called on Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Raheel Sharif.

Matters of mutual interest, regional stability and measures to enhance defence and security collaboration were discussed at the meeting, an ISPR news release stated.

Mr Zhang acknowledged Pakistan’s efforts in fighting terrorism and praised the successes achieved in the ongoing operation Zarb-i-Azb.

Underlining the importance of the CPEC, Mr Zhang said it would have high significance and long-term impact on the region and would be equally beneficial for the people of Pakistan and China.

The COAS reiterated Pakistan’s commitment to ensuring a secure environment for timely completion and subsequent management of the CPEC in the best interest of the region’s prosperity.

Mr Zhang also met National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq.

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