News / Asia

    China, Pakistan Vow All-Weather Friendship

    Pakistan's Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, center, and China's Premier Wen Jiabao, right, clap at a singing ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, May 18, 2011
    Pakistan's Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, center, and China's Premier Wen Jiabao, right, clap at a singing ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, May 18, 2011
    Stephanie Ho

    China and Pakistan are highlighting their 60 years of close friendship, as Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani met with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao in China.  

    Chinese state television showed Premier Wen Jiabao welcoming Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani to the Great Hall of the People.

    Mr. Wen said that no matter what international changes may take place, China and Pakistan will forever remain good neighbors, good friends, good partners and good brothers.

    The Pakistani leader called China his country’s best friend, and said the two nations have decided to take defense, economic and cultural ties to new heights.

    The two countries are celebrating China-Pakistan Friendship Year, to mark the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties.

    Both leaders also witnessed the signing of several agreements on finance and economic cooperation.

    Chinese officials have said repeatedly that the visit was planned weeks ago.

    But Andrew Small, a China expert at the U.S.-based German Marshall Fund, says the recent tensions between the United States and Pakistan following the death of Osama bin Laden give the Pakistani leader’s trip to China added significance.

    “It is a chance for the Pakistanis to demonstrate to the world, to the United States and to some extent, for the government to demonstrate to its own public that if relations with the United States deteriorate too much, then they have some other diplomatic and economic options,” said Small.

    This interpretation is rejected by Peking University International Studies Associate Professor Dong Wang, who says he thinks that for China, at least, the timing of the visit is purely coincidental.

    “I think that is just American interpretation or reading might be that Pakistan wants to use this, to try to take this trip, as a way to show to the American side that Pakistan has some other options," said Wang. "But I just do not think that the Chinese will do the same thing because it is not in the calculation of the Chinese side, because it is more Pakistan’s calculation. But, the Chinese cannot say, “No, you [Pakistani PM] should not go because I do not want Americans to have that impression.”

    Wang says despite the appearance that China and the United States are competing for Pakistan’s attention, the two large countries have similar concerns there.

    “I would like to say that the bottom line is that the United States and China share an interest, share a very important interest, in Pakistan," said Wang. "We both want to have good relations with Pakistan, and also would like to see a stable Pakistan, and a Pakistan which is doing very effectively, in terms of countering terrorist threat.”

    Two-way trade between China and Pakistan has grown sharply in recent years and is now more than $8.5-billion. Wang says he expects this number to continue growing, but he cites two serious problems, attacks against Chinese workers in Pakistan and the South Asian nation’s lack of economic development.

    The Pakistani leader is due to meet Chinese President Hu Jintao before leaving Beijing on Friday.

    You May Like

    US-Russia Tensions Complicate Syria War

    With a shared enemy and opposing allies, Russia and the US are working to avoid confrontation

    Video Re-opening Old Wounds in Beirut's Bullet-riddled Yellow House

    Built in neo-Ottoman style in 1920s, it is set to be re-opened in Sept. as ‘memory museum’ - bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity

    Cambodian-Americans Lobby for Human Rights Resolution

    Resolution condemns all forms of political violence in Cambodia, urges Cambodian government to end human rights violations, calls for respect of press freedom

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territoryi
    X
    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora