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Khawaja Asif meets Chinese counterpart ahead of SCO meeting

BEIJING: Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif, who is on a visit to China to attend the Council of Foreign Minister’s meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), on Monday met his counterpart and State Councilor Wang Yi at Beijing.

This is the first time that the Foreign Minister would be participating in the SCO Council of Foreign Ministers’ meeting after membership of Pakistan in SCO.

Khawaja Asif congratulated Mr. Wang Yi on his reelection as foreign minister and elevation as State Councilor. He also congratulated him on re-election of Xi Jinping as the President of China and as the leader of Communist Party of China.

During the meeting the two sides exchanged in-depth views on all matters of mutual concern. The foreign minister appreciated the vibrant role of SCO in the region as a significantly vital forum for regional cooperation.

He underlined Pakistan’s support to China’s chairmanship of SCO in 2017-2018, and is looking forward to a productive and fruitful meeting of Heads of State of SCO to be held in Qingdao in June 2018.

The foreign minister also appreciated the Chinese initiative for Pakistan-China-Afghanistan Foreign Ministers’ Trilateral Mechanism for enhancing cooperation with Afghanistan.  He also apprised of the grave situation prevailing in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK).

State Councilor Mr. Wang Yi stated that Pakistan and China are close friends and all-weather strategic cooperative partners.

He appreciated Pakistan’s active participation in the SCO and all its mechanisms. He expressed China’s strong support for Pakistan’s contribution to enhancing regional peace and cooperation and its relentless and tireless efforts in countering terrorism.

Both sides agreed to enhance and further deepen their bilateral cooperation and pledged to play a key role in regional stability through Shanghai Cooperation Organization and its forums.

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