Xi urges closer China-Pakistan ties at meeting with Khan

From left: Russian President Vladimir Putin, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani, and Kyrgyz President Sooronbai Jeenbekov at a meeting of the Shanghai
From left: Russian President Vladimir Putin, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani, and Kyrgyz President Sooronbai Jeenbekov at a meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Council of Heads of State in Bishkek yesterday. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

BISHKEK • Chinese President Xi Jinping met Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan in Kyrgyzstan yesterday, and urged the two countries to foster a closer community with a shared future against complicated regional and international situations.

Meeting Mr Khan on the sidelines of the 19th Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit, Mr Xi noted that it had been his third meeting with the Pakistani leader in the past eight months.

This, he said, fully demonstrates the high level of the China-Pakistan all-weather strategic cooperative partnership. He called on the two countries to carry out closer coordination and cooperation.

Mr Xi said China and Pakistan should carry out in-depth communication on issues of common concern, so as to make joint efforts to safeguard regional and international security and stability.

China and Pakistan should also expand and enrich the construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor with new focus on areas including industrial parks, agriculture and social welfare, Mr Xi said.

He called on the neighbouring countries to upgrade the China-Pakistan Free Trade Agreement as an opportunity to vigorously expand bilateral trade.

China is willing to help Pakistan within its capabilities, Mr Xi said, adding that China supports Pakistan in implementing its national counter-terrorism plan and is ready to help the country strengthen its counter-terrorism capacity.

 

China also supports Pakistan and India in improving their relations, the Chinese President added.

Noting that China is Pakistan's all-weather strategic cooperative partner, Mr Khan said his country appreciates China's support and assistance, and applauds Beijing's active role in promoting international and regional peace and security.

Pakistan, Mr Khan said, is committed to deepening its strategic relationship with China, and will firmly advance the construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, adding that his country will take effective measures to ensure security for the project.

XINHUA

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 15, 2019, with the headline 'Xi urges closer China-Pakistan ties at meeting with Khan'. Print Edition | Subscribe