Ties with China termed cornerstone of Pakistan’s foreign policy

Published March 31, 2022
TUNXI DISTRICT (China): Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi waves as he poses for photos while standing next to Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and acting foreign minister of Afghanistan Amir Khan Muttaqi on Wednesday.—AP
TUNXI DISTRICT (China): Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi waves as he poses for photos while standing next to Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and acting foreign minister of Afghanistan Amir Khan Muttaqi on Wednesday.—AP

HUANGSHAN (China): Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi met here on Wednesday and discussed various issues of regional and international importance.

The two foreign ministers exchanged views on bilateral strategic, economic and security cooperation, Covid-19 pandemic, peace, stability and development in Afghanistan and regional and international issues of mutual interest, the Foreign Office said in a statement.

Mr Qureshi is visiting China to attend the third meeting of foreign ministers of Afghanistan’s neighbouring countries.

Mr Qureshi also held separate meetings with his Russian, Iranian and Afghan counterparts Sergey Lavrov, Dr Hossein Amir Abdollahian and Amir Khan Muttaqi.

He is accompanied by the foreign secretary and Pakistan’s Special Representative on Afghanistan.

Mr Qureshi stressed that relations with China were the cornerstone of Pakistan’s foreign policy and reaffirmed the government’s resolve to further deepen the Pakistan-China All-Weather Strategic Cooperative Partnership.

Qureshi in China holds separate meetings with Chinese, Russian, Iranian and Afghan foreign ministers

He reiterated Pakistan’s firm adherence to the One-China Policy and continued support on issues of China’s core interests and thanked China for its consistent support to Pakistan’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, political stability and socio-economic development.

He thanked China for hosting meetings on Afghanistan and emphasised deeper engagement between Pakistan and China as well as Afghanistan’s other neighbours to promote peace, stability and development in the country and facilitate regional connectivity through the extension of CPEC to Afghanistan.

The two sides also exchanged views on the situation in Ukraine. Highlighting Pakistan’s position calling for immediate cessation of hostilities, provision of humanitarian assistance and continued efforts for a solution through dialogue and diplomacy, the foreign minister conveyed readiness to help facilitate a diplomatic solution to the conflict including through the OIC platform.

Qureshi-Lavrov meeting

Meanwhile, Mr Qureshi also met his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov and expressed the hope that talks between Russia and Ukraine would succeed in finding a diplomatic solution to the war in Ukraine.

The foreign minister shared Pakistan’s principled position on the situation in Ukraine including cessation of hostilities, provision of humanitarian assistance, and efforts for a solution through dialogue and diplomacy.

The two foreign ministers reviewed bilateral relations and exchanged views on the regional situation.

The foreign minister conveyed Pakistan’s readiness to reinforce efforts for a diplomatic solution including through the OIC platform.

Talks with Iran’s FM

Mr Qureshi also met Iran’s Foreign Minister Dr Hossein Amir Abdollahian and referred to frequent high-level exchanges between Pakistan and Iran and reaffirmed Pakistan’s desire to strengthen bilateral cooperation in all areas.

He also underscored the importance of earliest completion of border markets for enhanced bilateral economic cooperation.

The two foreign ministers took comprehensive review of bilateral relations and the regional situation.

Mr Qureshi briefed Dr Abdollahian on the unprovoked violation of Pakistan’s airspace by an Indian supersonic missile and said such actions were fraught with grave implications and represented a serious threat to regional peace and stability.

Foreign Minister Qureshi also met Afghan Interim Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi. He reaffirmed Pakistan’s full support for a peaceful, stable and prosperous Afghanistan and highlighted areas of close collaboration including trade, movement of people, and connectivity.

Published in Dawn, March 31st, 2022

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