Chinese, Pakistani foreign ministers agree to jointly defend regional stability

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Friday spoke with his Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi on the phone and discussed a wide range of issues including regional situation, the Kashmir issue, Afghanistan, the Belt and Road Initiative and COVID-19, China's Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Wang said China and Pakistan should work together to jointly tackle challenges and defend common interests and regional peace and stability.

The COVID-19 pandemic has profoundly changed the world with more global and regional dynamics, Wang said.

China and Pakistan are reliable partners and have always supported each other in issues concerning each other's core interests, he said.

Along with other 52 countries, Pakistan voiced support for China's national security law for the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region at the 44th Session of the United Nations Human Rights, and China highly appreciates that. Such action shows international society's support for international justice and international norms, Wang added.

Wang called for the two countries to speed up projects under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and expand cooperation in health and medical care, training the workforce, poverty alleviation and agriculture to help with the economic recovery in Pakistan.

As for the terrorist attack in Karachi on June 29, Wang said China firmly supports the Pakistani government's effort to fight against terrorism and he hopes the Pakistani government will provide more protection for Chinese companies and citizens working in the country.

Qureshi echoed Wang over the dynamics of international issues, saying that the Pakistani government is ready to strengthen coordination and cooperation with China to maintain regional stability.

Qureshi also highlighted the importance of the Belt and Road Initiative and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. He said that Pakistan wants to deepen cooperation with China under the framework.

He said Hong Kong (affair) is China's internal affairs, and Pakistan firmly opposes any foreign interference in China's domestic issues, and Pakistan stands firmly with China on issues concerning China's core interests.