| Reacts to US Secretary of States’ suggestions to Pakistan for debt relief from China | Urges US to help Pakistan with real action instead of commenting on Pak-China
ties | Says Pakistanis understand the nature of Islamabad-Beijing brotherly ties
BEIJING: Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin on Tuesday said that the United States better help Pakistan with “real action” instead of commenting on the bilateral ties between Islamabad and Beijing.
The statement came in response to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s statement, urging Pakistan to seek debt relief from its close partner China as floods devastate the country.
“The US had better help Pakistani people with real action rather than just commenting on China-Pakistan cooperation,” Wang Wenbin said in a statement.
In response to a question, Wang Wenbin said “since the floods hit the country, China has rushed to Pakistan’s aid as its genuine friend and brother in times of need. The Chinese government has provided 400 million RMB worth of humanitarian assistance and China’s civil society has also lent a helping hand”.
Beijing will continue to do its utmost to help the Pakistani people overcome the floods and rebuild their homes at an early date, the spokesperson said, adding, China and Pakistan have had fruitful economic and financial cooperation. The Pakistani people know it best.
“I also urged our colleagues to engage China on some of the important issues of debt relief and restructuring so that Pakistan can more quickly recover from the floods,” Blinken said.
China is a key economic and political partner of Pakistan, pushing ahead with a $54 billion “economic corridor” that will build infrastructure and give Beijing an outlet to the Indian Ocean, although Chinese interests have also faced attacks from separatists.
Washington, whose Cold War alliance with Islamabad has frayed, has repeatedly charged that China will reap the benefits while Pakistan will face unsustainable debt. The warnings by the United States — which considers China its preeminent global competitor — have repeatedly been brushed aside by Pakistan.
Some 1,600 people — one-third of them children — have died in Pakistan’s floods and more than seven million have been displaced, amid fears that such severe disasters will become more common due to climate change. The United States has committed $56 million in humanitarian aid and sent 17 planes full of supplies, with promises of long-term support.