China vows `full support` to Pak sovereignty
Last Updated: Tuesday, September 27, 2011, 21:37
Islamabad: China on Tuesday pledged its "full support" for Pakistan's sovereignty and territorial integrity and vowed to work with it for peace in the region, amid tensions between Islamabad and Washington over allegations that ISI was conducting a proxy war in Afghanistan.

Chinese Public Security Minister Meng Jianzhu, who arrived in Islamabad yesterday, conveyed Beijing's support during a meeting with Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani this afternoon. Meng extended China's "full support" to Pakistan's "sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity and vowed to work with it for progress and peace in the region and the world", state-run APP news agency reported.

Pakistan is the only country that enjoys an "all-weather friendship with China," he said.

Gilani thanked China for backing Pakistan when it needs support "the most", said a statement issued by the premier's office.

Gilani added, "Your friends are our friends, your enemies are our enemies and your security is our security".

The two countries together "can progress and prosper and bring the dividends of development to their people", he added.

After his meeting with the visiting Chinese minister, Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik also pledged to crack down against Chinese militants hiding in the country's restive tribal belt, saying China's enemy was an enemy of his country.

Meng, who met Pakistan Army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani shortly after his arrival in Islamabad yesterday, said he had held "very meaningful and productive" meetings with President Asif Ali Zardari and the military leadership.

Gilani referred to the cooperation between the two countries in terrorism, intelligence-sharing and anti- narcotics and said: "We will cooperate with you to the extent you want us to cooperate".

Though Meng travelled to Islamabad at a time when Pakistan-US ties have plunged to a new low, the Foreign Office spokesperson contended his visit was prescheduled and in the context of the 60th anniversary of Sino-Pakistan ties.

In public remarks, Meng said his discussions with Pakistani leaders would focus on ways to "contribute to national security and regional stability".

Cooperation against Uighur Chinese militants were also discussed, Malik told the media.

Pakistani officials describe their ties with China as an "all-weather friendship".

China provides Pakistan with large amounts of direct foreign investment in sectors like telecommunications and infrastructure.

Meng's visit assumes significance as Pakistan and the US are engaged in a war of words following US military chief Adm Mike Mullen's accusation that the Inter-Services Intelligence has backed the Haqqani network in carrying out terror attacks in Afghanistan.

Mullen described the Haqqani network as a "veritable arm" of the ISI.


First Published: Tuesday, September 27, 2011, 21:37

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