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China to 'uphold justice for Pakistan' on Kashmir issue

Updated August 09, 2019

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Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi was received at Diaoyutai State Guesthouse by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Beijing on Friday. — Foreign Office
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi was received at Diaoyutai State Guesthouse by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Beijing on Friday. — Foreign Office

China has announced it will "uphold justice for Pakistan on the international arena" and that it supports Pakistan's decision to approach the United Nations Security Council in the wake of India's decision to revoke Kashmir's special status.

The foreign ministers of both countries held an urgent meeting in Beijing on Friday to discuss the current situation in occupied Kashmir following the move made by India earlier this week.

A statement released by China's foreign ministry, said that it will "continue to support Pakistan in safeguarding its legitimate rights and interests".

According to the statement, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi noted that China is "seriously concerned about the latest escalation of tensions in Kashmir".

China also believes that unilateral actions "will complicate the situation" and should not be taken.

It called on Pakistan and India to "properly resolve historical grievances, get rid of the zero-sum mindset, avoid unilateral action and seek a new path to peaceful coexistence".

China recognises that the Kashmir dispute must be properly resolved "based on the UN Charter, relevant UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreement", said the statement.

Explainer: What India's change to occupied Kashmir's status means

Following the meeting, in a video statement, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that he had held a two-and-a-half hour long meeting with FM Yi.

Qureshi said that FM Yi had remarked that the meeting had been "a very beneficial and timely" one.

He said that FM Yi had told him that despite a busy schedule and the short notice, he was holding the meeting on the instructions of President Xi Jinping because "the nature of the relationship between Pakistan and China is different and the response level should also be different".

Chinese and Pakistani delegations pictured during a meeting held to discuss the escalating situation in occupied Kashmir. — Photo courtesy Shah Mahmood Qureshi Official Facebook
Chinese and Pakistani delegations pictured during a meeting held to discuss the escalating situation in occupied Kashmir. — Photo courtesy Shah Mahmood Qureshi Official Facebook

"I am happy to share that I presented Pakistan's point of view and its concerns surrounding India's recent measures on occupied Kashmir," said Qureshi in the video statement.

"China once more proved itself to be a trustworthy friend," he said, adding, "China completely supported Pakistan's stance on the matter."

He went on to say that China agreed with Pakistan that India's actions are unilateral and that with the change in status of occupied Kashmir the region's stability and peace are in danger.

"It was agreed that it was a disputed territory and still is — a fact which is also recognised by the UN — and the solution will have to be based on the resolutions outlined by the UN," said Qureshi.

The foreign minister said he conveyed Pakistan's concerns that after the amendments to Kashmir's status, and after curfew restrictions are removed, "a new reign of oppression and barbarism may be enforced with which not only will further human rights violations occur but there is fear it will lead to further bloodshed".

He said that FM Yi was informed that "there may be a response and to divert attention from the response, there might be another incident like Pulwama that takes place."

Qureshi said that China will offer complete support in the decisions taken by the Pakistan government, including that of approaching the UN Security Council, and will continue its cooperation with Pakistan.

"Our missions and ministries will maintain contact and exchange of views so that our approach and response is a joint one and we can move forward with full devotion in the matter."

According to Radio Pakistan, the foreign minister was received by Pakistan's Ambassador to China Naghmana Hashmi on his arrival at the Beijing airport.

He was then taken to the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse where he was warmly received by FM Yi.

FM Qureshi is visiting China as part of efforts to pressure India to reverse its decision revoking the special status of the disputed region of Kashmir, The Associated Press reported.

Before leaving for Beijing, Qureshi said he will apprise Islamabad's “trusted friend” about the situation after New Delhi downgraded its portion of Kashmir from statehood to a territory, limited its decision-making power and eliminated its right to its own constitution.

Indian occupied Kashmir has been under an unprecedented security lockdown to prevent unrest as the decisions were announced.

Pakistan is considering a proposal to approach the International Court of Justice over India's action, according to AP.