Beijing: In the face of severe criticism of
Pakistan over the presence of Osama bin Laden on its soil,
China on Tuesday put up a strong defence of its close ally saying
Islamabad has made important contribution to the global fight
"We have to admit that the Pakistan government is firm in
resolve and strong in action in the fight against terrorism,
and Pakistan government has made important contribution to the
international fight against terrorism, to which we should have
no doubt," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Jiang Yu told
a media briefing here.
Answering a volley of questions on the US commando action
on bin Laden`s hideout at Abbotabad yesterday that resulted in
the killing of the al-Qaeda chief, Jiang said, "Pakistan is at
the important forefront of international war on terrorism."
"We have noted the Pakistan Foreign Ministry has said
after the incident that it will never allow its territory to
be used for terrorist activities and terrorist attacks against
any country and Pakistan will continue to support the
international efforts against terrorism," she said.
"We respect, understand and support Pakistan`s above
position. China will continue to firmly support Pakistan`s
formulation and implementation of anti-terrorist strategies
based on national conditions," she said.
China would like to "work with Pakistan, India and other
South Asian countries to maintain peace and harmony in South
Asia," Jiang said.
On whether China will press Pakistan to take action
against perpetrators of the Mumbai attacks, Jiang said "both
India and Pakistan are major countries in South Asia."
"Improving relations and enhancing coordination, taking
common action to maintain regional stability and development
is in the interest of both countries."
"We have seen positive measures taken by both countries
in improving relations. We uphold principles of
non-interference in other`s internal affairs," she said.
Asked whether China would like to join US and NATO-led
international coalition against terrorism in Afghanistan,
Jiang said, "International community should step up
coordination through multi-lateral channels."
"We have always been supporting Afghan reconstruction
and will continue to provide assistance to Afghan government.
We would like to see a peaceful, stable and independent
Jiang, who termed bin Laden`s killing as a milestone in
the international efforts against terrorism, said both the US
and China are victims of terrorism.
China supports countries formulating programmes in terms
of their national conditions and international laws to address
both the symptoms and causes of terrorism, she said.