CPEC will face no hurdles, Chinese Authorities Assured
Army chief General Raheel Sharif assured Chinese authorities on Wednesday that there would be no hurdles in the completion of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.
The army chief said maximum security has been put in place for the completion of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.
General Raheel’s statement during a meeting with Chinese Vice Minister of Ministry of State Security Dong Haizhou at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi.
“Matters relating to bilateral interest, regional security and security of CPEC came under discussion during the meeting,” an Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) statement said.
Security matters in regard to the project were discussed between the two. “China attaches great importance to its relations with Pakistan, and early completion of the project would not only benefit Pakistan and China but also the entire region,” Haizhou was quoted as saying.
China and Pakistan signed a Memorandum of Understanding on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor on July 5, 2013. The agreement was signed during Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit to China.
The CPEC, which will be constructed from 2014 to 2030, talks about integrated links to Chinese One Road, One Belt and 21st Century Maritime Silk Route. With active consultation of Chinese authorities, Pakistan has prepared a plan to construct three corridors, the western alignment, the central alignment and the eastern alignment. The last one has been picked for development in the first phase.
However, India has strongly opposed the corridor between China and Pakistan. Earlier, Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said that Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi “very strongly” raised the issue regarding China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) during his recent visit to Beijing, and termed the project “unacceptable”.
Further, Swaraj communicated Modi’s concerns regarding the $46 billion project, and said that the Indian government had summoned a Chinese envoy to apprise over the corridor that is to run through Pakistani Kashmir.
Earlier, Chinese authorities cautioned local authorities of a possible terror attack aimed at making the project a failure.
According to them, insurgents in Balochistan have prompted security fears for the 3,000-kilometre-long route in the province, a senior security official had told media.
He said in addition to the insurgents, many foreign hostile intelligence agencies could also extend their support to the militants to sabotage some key projects particularly on the eastern alignment — Gwadar to Quetta — where work has already started.
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