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China denies ‘pointless and baseless’ rumours of rift with Pakistan

BEIJING: China has denied “pointless and baseless” rumours of a rift with Pakistan amidst report of Chinese President Xi Jinping ignoring Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif during the recently concluded Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit in Astana, Kazakhstan.

“China and Pakistan are all-weather strategic partners enjoying relationship that runs long and deep,” said Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lu Kang during the regular press conference on Monday.

He assured that President Xi Jinping held “friendly talks” with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif many times at the sidelines of the 17th Meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the SCO member states.

Regarding the case of abducted Chinese national from Quetta, he said that that they are coordinating with the Pakistani government to do their best and step up efforts to verify relevant information.

He said the SCO has over the past sixteen years since its inception has become an important and dependable platform for member states to enhance political mutual trust, expand practical cooperation, deepen good neighbourliness and friendship, and jointly safeguard regional security and stability.

He said the Astana Summit achieved several objectives including admitting new members as both Pakistan and India are now full members of the SCO. It also upheld the Shanghai Spirit and strengthened close coordination between all members.

“This summit strengthened the cohesiveness of the SCO member states, charted the course for the future development of the SCO, and put forward new initiatives for the SCO cooperation,” said Mr. Kang.

China will host the next SCO summit in June 2018. The spokesman said that China will fulfill its duties and work along others to ensure that the SCO continues to develop in a sound and steady way and play a greater role in the common cause to maintain regional security and stability and promoting common prosperity, thus delivering more tangible benefits to people in all countries.



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