Protesters burn a US flag during a protest in Multan on November 27, 2011, against a Nato strike on Pakistan troops. — Photo by AFP

BEIJING: An influential state-run Chinese newspaper on Tuesday accused the United States of violating international law and fanning the flames of terrorism after Nato strikes killed 24 Pakistani soldiers.

The strongly-worded editorial in the People's Daily — mouthpiece of China's ruling Communist party — came after Beijing said it was “deeply shocked” by the strikes, which have exacerbated tensions between Islamabad and Washington.

“The United States and Nato have violated international law and international norms,” the paper said in an editorial condemning the attacks.

“This shows...that at crucial moments, the United States will not show the slightest hesitation to violate the sovereignty of another nation to ensure its 'absolute security'.”

The use of such cross-border tactics will only incite terrorist sentiment, the editorial added.

“The soil nurturing terrorism will become even more fertile, and terrorist activities will become more widespread,” it said.

Pakistan has reacted furiously to what it called an “unprovoked” strike, worsening US-Pakistani relations already in crisis after the killing in May of Osama bin Laden north of Islamabad by US special forces.

Washington has backed a full inquiry into Saturday's incident and sent its condolences, while Nato chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen on Sunday voiced regret over the “tragic, unintended” killings, but did not issue a full apology.

China is one of Pakistan's closest allies and the main arms supplier to Islamabad, which sees Beijing as an important counter-balance to its traditional rival India.

The two countries conducted joint military exercises over the weekend, while Beijing has built two nuclear power plants in Pakistan and is contracted to construct two more reactors.

Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi spoke to his Pakistani counterpart Hina Rabbani Khar on Monday and expressed shock over the attacks, a government statement said.

“All nations of the world and international organisations should fully respect Pakistan's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity,” Yang said, according to the statement.

Opinion

Courts & the poor
Updated 20 Jun 2021

Courts & the poor

Justice eludes those whose homes have been demolished.
No choice but to leave
20 Jun 2021

No choice but to leave

The influx of Afghan refugees into Pakistan is likely to increase again with the US withdrawal.
Cost of enforced modesty
Updated 19 Jun 2021

Cost of enforced modesty

By inviting mullahs to regulate biology textbooks the PTI government has put Pakistan in reverse gear.

Editorial

20 Jun 2021

More vaccines needed

THE vaccination rate in the country has slowed in recent days and could result in a crisis if not addressed...
20 Jun 2021

Balochistan protest

THE clashes outside the Balochistan Assembly on budget day were unfortunate. But they had been waiting to happen. ...
Silent victims
Updated 20 Jun 2021

Silent victims

THE deafening silence of political authorities, including leaders from the religious right, on the Mufti Azizur...
19 Jun 2021

NA peace — for now

AFTER a session of utter pandemonium and a distasteful war of words, normalcy finally returned to the National...
India uranium theft
Updated 19 Jun 2021

India uranium theft

REPORTS emerging from India about the theft of uranium and possible sale on the black market should be a cause for...
19 Jun 2021

KCR rigmarole

THURSDAY’S proceedings in the Supreme Court clearly demonstrated how divided the stakeholders are when it comes to...