Prime Minister Imran Khan stated on 29 June 2021 (Tuesday) that Pakistan considers it unfair for the USA and different Western powers to ask nations to facet with one another, as all states should keep optimistic relations with one another.
PM Imran Khan in a unique interview with LIU Xin of CGTN, that it is very unfair for the U.S. or other Western powers to make countries like Pakistan take sides. He said, “whatever will happen… no matter what pressure, China and Pakistan’s relationship is not going to change.” Pakistan and China have had a “very particular relationship” spanning over 70 years and nothing can change this time-tested, All-weather, All-Dimensions Strategic relationship. Usually described as higher than mountains, deeper than oceans, sweeter than Honey, Stronger than Steel, and termed as Iron Brothers or in Chinese as “Ba Tie”. He emphatically said: “Relationship between Pakistan and China is very deep, it is not just the governments, its people-to-people relationship.”
Throughout the interview, the prime minister elaborated on the deep-rooted ties between the two “Iron Brothers.” He reaffirmed that it doesn’t matter what occurs, it doesn’t matter what stress is placed on Pakistan, and relations between the two “great neighbors” will never deteriorate.
He acknowledged that the rapidly changing geopolitics, particularly the anti-China sentiments are being promoted by the United States, but Pakistan will be never part of spreading hate. Pakistan is a responsible state and genetically is a peace-loving nation. History has taught us a bitter lesson and Pakistan will not repeat the same mistakes again.
It is the stated policy of Pakistan to be a partner with anyone, anywhere, anytime but for peace, developments, and constructive engagements only. Pakistan cannot be a partner with anyone, anywhere, anytime in aggression, war, attacks, conflicts, or hate.
Pakistan paid a very high cost for friendship with the US, particularly, our sacrifices in Afghanistan during the last four decades were enormous. Despite official recognition from the US for Pakistan’s contribution and positive rile, yet penalized by strictest sanctions.
PM Imran Khan said a “strange, great rivalry” was taking place in the region, which everybody knew about. “The US formed a regional alliance called ‘Quad’ that includes India and a couple of other countries,” he said, adding that “if pressure is put on Pakistan to change its relations or downgrade its ties with China, it would not happen.” India as a member of this anti-China alliance – Quad, is supported generously. Liberal economic assistance, unlimited political and diplomatic support, supply of modern weapons and advanced technologies, and trade concession, has made India the second largest beneficiary of US aid, just after Israel. The US is helping India to rise against China, but, unfortunately, India is using all assistance received from America, against Pakistan. Unfair!
He recalled how China “always stood with us” whenever the country was in trouble politically or internationally or in a conflict with its neighbor, in an apparent reference to India.
“In good times, everyone stands with you but in your difficult, tough times, bad times, you remember those people who stood by you. That’s why you will find that in Pakistan, people always have a special fondness for people in China,” he added. When asked how ties between the two countries could deepen further, the prime minister replied: “Number one is trade.”
PM Imran Khan termed the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) the “biggest thing happening in Pakistan” and the economic future the country was moving towards. It is believed that the role of CPEC is as Oxygen to the ailing economy. CPEC is the guarantor for Pakistan’s economic take-off. The political relationship between Pakistan and China had gotten stronger as well because “whatever happens in any international forum, Pakistan and China stand together”, he said.
Last month, PM Khan and his Chinese counterpart Li Keqiang wrote letters to each other to mark 70 years of Pakistan-China friendship and vowed to further strengthen ties between the two states. “On behalf of the government and people of Pakistan, as well as on my own behalf, I wished to extend my heartiest felicitations to you on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Pakistan. “21st May 1951, the day when our relations were formally established, has been a watershed moment in our history. Our two people and successive leaderships and governments have made indefatigable efforts to foster, cement, and strengthen our ties. Our time-tested relationship is built around lasting values of mutual respect, mutual trust, and mutual understanding,” the prime minister said in his letter to his Chinese counterpart.
Pakistan was keeping close ties with China during the cold war era while siding with the West and signatory of many pacts with the West. Pakistan’s relations with China are always strong and trusted. Many other countries in the world maintain equally good relations with China as well as with the US. Why Pakistan cannot do the same, is not a matter of either with us or not. Pakistan is a mature and responsible country and should not be pressurized for choosing one or the other.
PM Interview is very clear and firm determination of people of Pakistan. Pakistan is a democratic country and the decision is based on 220 million people of Pakistan.