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September 2, 2017

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Pakistan will be defended, announces China

Pakistan will be defended, announces China

BEIJING: China on Thursday sent out a signal that it would defend Pakistan and would object to any discussion about Pakistan’s role in sheltering terrorists during the upcoming BRICS summit, which would be attended by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, foreign media reported.

China is worried Modi may raise the issue at the meeting because he did so at the Goa summit of BRICS last year while describing Pakistan as the “mother-ship of terrorism”.

“We also noticed that India, when it comes to Pakistan’s counter-terrorism, has some concerns. I don’t think this is an appropriate topic to be discussed at BRICS summit,” Hua Chunying, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, said at a briefing. She also indicated that raising the topic might affect the success of the summit because Chinese leaders may be forced to defend its close ally, Pakistan.

“The world is paying great attention to the BRICS summit. I hope relevant parties can work with China to ensure the success of the summit and make due contributions,” Hua said. She meant the five members of BRICS including India when she mentioned “relevant parties”.

This time the BRICS summit is taking place on September 3 in Xiamen in China, which regards Pakistan as an
“all-weather friend”. India is in a stronger position to raise the issue because US President Donald Trump recently accused Pakistan of sheltering terrorists and threatened to withdraw financial aid if Islamabad refused to mend its ways. There are chances Chinese leaders might come to Pakistan’s defence at the summit.

One of the main objectives of BRICS is to enhance cooperation among the five member countries in fighting against terrorism. But it is difficult for India to join hands in any meaningful manner unless Beijing adopts a different attitude on this issue when it comes to the role of Pakistan.

Hua said, “Pakistan is at forefront of counter terror efforts and has made sacrifices for this. The international community should recognise their contributions and sacrifices made by Pakistan.”

She added, “China is willing to work with Pakistan and other countries to enhance our cooperation in counterterrorism. This serves the common interest of all parties.”

China routinely refers to “sacrifices” made by Pakistan in battling terrorism.

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