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Refuses hard cash, may provide soft loan; PM, Hu agree to take strategic partnership to new heights; joint statement lauds Pak role in combating terror; Pakistan says will never allow its soil to be used to attack other countries
 
 
Muhammad Saleh Zaafir
Saturday, May 21, 2011
From Print Edition
 
 

 

BEIJING: The Chinese leadership has agreed in principle to help Pakistan in its difficulties for bridging the budget deficit and provide soft loan for rescuing its economy. The Chinese leadership has, however, declined to oblige the desire expressed by Islamabad for fiscal assistance. It has told the visiting guests from Pakistan that China, as part of its policy, doesn’t give hard cash as financial assistance to any country. Chinese President Hu Jintao has expressed his fullest support for Pakistan’s national endeavours. He will take the matter before the highest political institution and policy making institution, Politburo, to seek its approval for supply of soft loan to Pakistan.

 

Highly-placed diplomatic sources told The News upon conclusion of the four-day official visit of Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani to China that while expressing its unflinching support for Pakistan’s security, integrity and solidarity, the Chinese leadership has advised Pakistan to mend its fences with all of its neighbours and try to win the international blessings for its national as well as international goals. China said the world must know and appreciate Pakistan’s role for eradication of terrorism and extremism, so that the globe could become a peaceful place. The Chinese leadership also asked Islamabad to put efforts for removal of irritants with Washington and New Delhi, the sources said.

 

The Chinese leadership regretted that terrorists were flourishing in various centres and Pakistan had yet to take an effective action to remove such centres. It was an obvious reference/signal about Madrassas.

 

The Chinese leadership has also asked Pakistan to play more effective role in Afghanistan where the chances of peace are getting brighter after sometime.

 

The Chinese government did not agree with a proposal from Pakistan for selling JF-17 multi-purpose fighter planes produced by Pakistan and China jointly. Pakistan has received offers for the sale of the planes about four times more than what these planes cost Pakistan. The Chinese have asked Pakistan not to sell the planes before the expiry of 10 years of the production of the same.

 

The sources revealed that Pakistan’s satellite Pak-One Sat is undergoing lab test as the satellite has been manufactured by Pakistan but it would be launched by China through its rocket in the orbit. The satellite has spent 11 days for tests of various parameters in China and it is likely that it would take seven days further in labs before getting ready for launching, the sources said.

 

The satellite will be launched on 14th of August this year. Prime Minister Gilani, who visited the Chinese Space Research Academy here on Friday, had visited the site and he was impressed to see advancement of Chinese technology on space. The prime minister also inspected 13 Chinese satellites, which have been prepared in China through its most modern technology for various purposes.

 

In the meanwhile, Prime Minister Gilani and Chinese President Hu Jintao on Friday agreed to strengthen their historic relationship and take their strategic partnership to new heights. The two leaders in a meeting held here at the Great Hall of the People held a detailed discussion on bilateral ties as well as other matters of mutual interest, including the regional situation. After the meeting, which continued for one hour, President Hu acknowledged Pakistan’s outstanding contribution in combating terrorism and said that the international community should respect its sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence. President Hu also called upon the international community to help Pakistan in its endeavours to combat extremism and terrorism. Hu said that Pakistan was an important country in the region and had a unique role in promoting reconciliation and development in Afghanistan.

 

Prime Minister Gilani thanked the Chinese leader for his country’s support to Pakistan for its independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity after the Abbottabad incident. Congratulating Gilani on his successful visit to China, President Hu said it will open a new chapter of cooperation between the two friendly countries.

 

The two leaders also discussed ways and means to strengthen the relationship and cooperation between Pakistan and China in diverse fields, with the focus on financing of infrastructure, energy and agricultural projects in Pakistan.

 

President Hu noted that Prime Minister Gilani and Premier Wen Jiabao held “very productive” talks as the two sides also signed new cooperation documents. He said that Prime Minister Gilani’s visit was important as it coincided with the 60th anniversary of diplomatic ties between Pakistan and China and also with the Pak-China Friendship Year. President Hu hoped that Gilani’s visit would boost the already existing close and warm relations.

 

He appreciated the contributions made by Prime Minister Gilani and his father over a period of several years in fortifying the Pak-China friendship. Prime Minister Gilani said it was always an honour and a moment of pride for the Pakistanis whenever they interacted with their Chinese brethren. He also thanked the Chinese government for the hospitality extended to him and his delegation.

 

The prime minister also congratulated the Chinese President on the 60th anniversary of the establishment of Pak-China diplomatic ties and said the two sides were celebrating this momentous occasion with a renewed pledge to take their strategic partnership to new heights.

 

Meanwhile, a joint statement issued simultaneously from Islamabad and Beijing at the end of Prime Minister Gilani’s visit, stated: “China believes that Pakistan’s efforts for promoting peace and stability in South Asia need to be recognised and supported.”

 

The two countries noted that terrorism, separatism and extremism were posing serious threats to regional peace, stability and security and called for substantive cooperation. Both sides agreed to jointly fight these under bilateral and multilateral frameworks.

 

“The Chinese side recognised the tremendous efforts and the great sacrifice that Pakistan has made in fighting terrorism and reiterated its respect and support for the efforts of Pakistan to advance its counter-terrorism strategy and safeguard its security,” the joint statement mentioned.

 

Pakistan reiterated that it would never allow its territory to be used to attack any country and would continue to support international counter-terrorism cooperation. Both the countries agreed to strengthen communication and coordination in regional affairs, particularly on issues such as Afghanistan and regional cooperation. Pakistan also reiterated its firm commitment to the one-China policy and extended support for the cause of China’s unification.