No rift in China-Pak ties due to terror attacks

An article published in China Daily tacitly confirmed the recent hush-hush visit of ISI chief.

Beijing: China has not joined India`s stand on terror camps inside Pakistan when it blamed it for a recent militant attack in restive Xinjiang, state media said on Friday.

The article published in China Daily also tacitly confirmed the recent hush-hush visit of ISI chief Shuja Pasha here to discuss the issue of Uygur extremists undergoing training in Pakistan.

Playing down the significance of the local government in Kashghar stating that the leaders of East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM), who conducted a spate of attacks there on July 30 and 31, were trained in Pakistan, the article said it is wrong to presume that it pointed to a "rift" between the two long term allies.

Within hours of the Chinese statement, Pakistan Foreign Ministry "promised full cooperation to China to weed out terrorist from Pakistan", the article published in the China Daily said.

Tacitly confirming the visit of ISI chief it said, "And the Chief of Pakistan`s Inter-Service Intelligence (General Ahmed Shuja Pasha) visited Beijing recently, during which he must have discussed the anti-terrorism and anti-separatism issues with Chinese officials," it said.

It is perhaps the first time that Pasha`s visit figured in the Chinese media. As per a Pakistan media report, he was supposed to have arrived here on July 30, the first day of the attacks.

Both China and Pakistan however declined to comment on it. The article written by a Han Hua, associate professor international studies of the Peking University, admitted that it was "unusual" for China blaming Pakistan, considering their close strategic relationship.

But it would be wrong project it as a "rift" between long term allies.

"After Kashghar attacks, some media reports interpreted the local authorities statement as a sign of China finally joining the chorus of two Pakistan`s other neighbours, India and Afghanistan, that Islamabad has failed to demolish militants` camps on its side", it said.

"But such accusations are not conducive to rooting out terrorism from the region. After all like the US, India and China, Pakistan is also a victim of terrorism and Pakistan government has shown its determination to fight terrorism", it said, stressing the importance to work with Islamabad to root out terrorism.

"Though it was unusual for China to say that the Kashghar rioters had received training in Pakistan based ETIM camps and terrorist activities in Xinjiang are cause of concern, only the short sighted would prophesy a rift between Beijing and Islamabad and overlook the solidity of Sino-Pakistan partnership," it said.

The Sino-Pak relations weathered many storms and are still going strong, it said adding that it was "amateurish" to presume that China did not know that ETIM activist received training in "Pakistan-based camps or the ETIM –al Qaeda connections".

"China has known these facts and Pakistan has been cooperating with it in the fight against terrorism. In fact, Pakistan has handed over some Uygur separatists to China," it said.

"The decade-long cooperation between China and Pakistan against terrorism cannot be easily broken, either by the latest Kashgar attacks or by some media outlets` designs", it said and recalled the statement issued by Chinese Foreign Minister days later reaffirming "firm partnership" between China and Pakistan against terrorism and religious extremism.


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