CHIEF of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Wednesday said that Pakistan greatly valued its friendly relations with “iron brother” China.
He said this during a meeting with the Ambassador of China to Pakistan Nong Rong in which the two sides discussed matters of mutual interest, progress on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and regional security situation including the latest developments in the Afghan peace process.
The frequent meetings between leaders of the two countries and visits of delegations are reflective of the closeness of ties between Pakistan and China and such interactions become all the more relevant in view of fast changing regional and global scenarios and new dimensions in bilateral relationship.
Last month, General Wei Fenghe, Minister of National Defence of China met General Bajwa and on the occasion a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed for enhancement of defence cooperation between the armies of the two countries.
It is significant to note that China has been extending its unflinching support to Pakistan on all issues at regional and international forums.
The meeting of the Chinese Ambassador with the COAS assumes greater significance as the United States is pulling out its troops from Afghanistan and regional countries have to make concerted efforts to harmonize their strategies to deal with the emerging situation as apprehensions are being expressed that the country might plunge into another vicious cycle of civil war with serious consequences of the strife and instability for neighbours.
Apart from strong defence ties, Pakistan Army is also playing a crucial role in providing a secured environment for CPEC-related projects and personnel, which is a big challenge due to declared policies of some powers to make efforts to sabotage this historic initiative.
One must also acknowledge the pivotal role that the Chinese envoy Nong Rong is playing in bringing the two countries still closer in different areas to mutual advantage.