- File Photo

BEIJING: Brushing aside New Delhi media's frenzy over joint anti-terrorism exercise, the Ministry of National Defence here has dismissed Indian reports that China and Pakistan are holding a joint military exercise to put pressure on New Delhi, and said the anti-terror drill is not targeted at any third country.

According to the annual exchange plan between China and Pakistan's militaries, the two armies will hold the 'Friendship 2011' joint anti-terror exercise near Islamabad, The China Daily quoted the Information Office of the Ministry of National Defence.

“This is the first joint drill of the two armies this year and is not targeted at any third nation. It is aimed at enhancing the capability of the two militaries to handle non-traditional security threats and launch joint anti-terror activities,” the office said in a written reply.

The two-week exercise will begin on Nov 16, it said.

Fu Xiaoqiang, an expert on South Asian studies at the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, while rejecting the report accused the Indian media of basing such reports on “hearsay evidence”.

“They always wear blinkers to examine China cooperation with Pakistan.

For example, we all know there are many Chinese experts and engineers in Pakistan working on large projects. It is the Indian media which linked that with security issues,” he said.

Premier Wen Jiabao suggested that the Indian media should stop overplaying security issues and make more positive efforts to improve bilateral relations, when he visited the country last year.

The premier said that, in recent years, there has been no conflict in the China-India border area.

“But the border issue has been hyped as a rather serious problem.”