COAS Gen Asim Munir Vows 'Full Support' For CPEC

COAS Gen Asim Munir Vows 'Full Support' For CPEC
Chinese State Councillor and Foreign Minister Qin Gang visited Pakistan's chief of army staff (COAS) General Syed Asim Munir at the Army House, the army chief's official residence in Rawalpindi, on Sunday to discuss matters of bilateral interest.

According to the military's media wing Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), discussions between the top Chinese diplomat and the chief of Pakistan's powerful army included matters pertaining to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), regional security and defence cooperation.

During the meeting, army chief Gen Asim Munir reiterated Pakistan's commitment to the Sino-Pak strategic relations. He also appreciated China's unwavering support for Pakistan on regional and international issues.

Gen Asim Munir pledged full support for CPEC, which is the "flagship" component of China's massive Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The multi-billion dollar investment programme is widely reported to have suffered from snags and delays in the past few years, and more recently, a Chinese engineer was accused of blasphemy in the Kohistan region of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in Pakistan.

As he highlighted the importance of the long-standing strategic relations between the two neighbourly countries and allies, Chinese foreign minister Qin Gang "expressed satisfaction" over the progress made so far on the CPEC. He also spoke to Gen Asim Munir of China's commitment to ensure the timely completion of CPEC projects.

Both sides also discussed the emerging security situation in the region, as the two met in the backdrop of the China-Pakistan-Afghanistan trilateral meeting held in Islamabad on Saturday. The army chief acknowledged China's role in promoting peace and stability in the region, while foreign minister Qin also appreciated Pakistan's efforts for regional peace and stability.

China and Pakistan agreed to enhance their bilateral cooperation in the fields of defense and security to "counter common security challenges". Both sides reiterated the determination to further strengthen the friendship between Pakistan and China, according to the ISPR.