INTERNATIONAL DESK: Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar on Monday emphasised Pakistan’s close strategic ties with China and recalled the political consensus in the country on the relationship.
Ms Khar, while speaking at an event on the upcoming 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China hosted by Pakistan-China Institute, said Pakistan was “unapologetically close” to China in a strategic partnership which was growing.
She said that there was a broad consensus across the political divide that China was the cornerstone of the country’s foreign policy. This emphasis on ties with China, she said, was given by former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and no subsequent government altered this fundamental principle of the foreign policy.
China, Ms Khar said, united Pakistan and was a pillar of peace and stability in the region and a preserver, promoter and protector of principles of peaceful coexistence in the region.
“The initiatives launched by President Xi Jinping, whether it is Global Development Initiative or Global Security Initiative, were a testament to the fact that China prioritised human security and stability over confrontation,” she observed.
Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Nong Rong expressed solidarity with Pakistan over the floods that have wreaked havoc across the country and said China would not leave Pakistan in such testing times.
Commenting on the National Peoples’ Congress, he said it was the most important political agenda towards the end of the year.
The Congress is held every five years, where China watchers look for clues to the country’s future. President Xi Jinping is expected to be re-elected for his third term as Secretary General of CPC and President of China. Moreover, the Congress will set key priorities for the next five years, in particular, as well as China’s two-stage development plan for the middle of the 21st century.
Meanwhile, CPEC, he said, had transformed Pakistan’s socio-economic landscape by overhauling infrastructure and alleviating the energy crisis. He termed Pakistan-China relations as ‘rock-solid’.
In his opening remarks, Chairman of Senate Committee on Defence and Pakistan-China Institute Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed said the core message emanating from President Xi Jinping’s leadership was people-centric development and human security.
He said that the Global Development Initiative (GDI), introduced by President Xi Jinping on Sept 21, 2021, promoted inclusive and open collaboration and was a crucial platform for international cooperation and the public good that China offered.
Similarly, he recalled, President Xi, this year, announced the Global Security Initiative (GSI) for ‘upholding the principle of indivisible security, building a balanced, effective and sustainable security architecture, and opposing the building of national security based on insecurity in other countries’. (Dawn)