Pakistan categorically denies existence of any US military base on its soil
ISLAMABAD – The Pakistani Foreign Office once again clarified on Thursday that there was no US military or airbase in Pakistan and no such proposal was under consideration.
Foreign Office Spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri expressed these views during a weekly media briefing here at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Chaudhri said, “Any speculation on this account was baseless and irresponsible and should be avoided.”
He said, “Pakistan and China have so far completed 19 projects under the umbrella of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), while 28 are under-construction and 41 more in the pipeline.
“Both Pakistan and China remain committed to implementation of CPEC for quality economic growth and enhanced regional connectivity.”
Chaudhri said the tremendous progress made in the CPEC projects signaled the “shared commitment of Pakistan and China.”
He mentioned that last month, the Rashakai Special Economic Zone under the transformational China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was inaugurated by Prime Minister Imran Khan. Over the past seven years, he said, CPEC projects had created more than 26,000 jobs and boosted local power industry, he added.
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On the two-day official visit of Tajikistan’s President Emomali Rahmon, the Spokesperson said the two sides exchanged views on deepening bilateral cooperation in diverse areas including political, economic, trade, investment, energy, security, defence, culture, education and regional connectivity.
“The visit of the Tajik President is in line with Pakistan’s vision of enhancing strategic partnership with the Central Asian States, for regional connectivity and integration,” he said.
On Palestine, he said while the ceasefire announced on 21st May in the Occupied Palestinian Territories was a welcome development, “we once again reiterate the need for permanent resolution of the Palestine issue.”
“Pakistan believes that a viable, independent and contiguous Palestinian state based on internationally agreed parameters with the pre-1967 borders, and Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital is the only way forward to the Palestine issue,” he said.
On Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu & Kashmir (IIOJK), he said it had been 22 months since the unprecedented military siege, communications blockade and suspension of fundamental freedoms in IIOJK.
The lives and livelihoods of the Kashmiri people have been severely affected in the aftermath of India’s illegal and unilateral actions of 5th August 2019, he added.
The FO Spokesperson said India continued to employ rape, torture, degrading treatment and killings of Kashmiri women as instruments of state terrorism in the occupied territory.
“India’s gross and systematic violations of human rights in the occupied territory and lack of accountability of the perpetrators have been widely documented by a number of independent Commissions, human rights organizations, global media and civil society organizations, including the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR),” he added.
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