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China rejects Indian statement over provincial status of GB

BEIJING: China has rejected Indian statements over granting provisional provincial status to Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan.

During a regular briefing in Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry’s Spokesperson Wang Wenbin reiterated that China’s position on the Kashmir issue is consistent and clear.

He said the Kashmir issue should be resolved peacefully and properly according to the UN charter, relevant UN Security Council (UNSC) resolutions and bilateral agreements. He categorically rejected the Indian statement over the provisional provincial status to Gilgit-Baltistan.

Pakistan has already categorically rejected the Indian government’s statement on Gilgit-Baltistan terming the administrative, political and economic reforms as a longstanding demand of the people of the region.

Replying to another question, the Chinese foreign office spokesman applauded Pakistan’s positive remarks on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and the completion of projects.

“The CPEC is an important pilot BRI project and a flagship for China-Pakistan bilateral cooperation. Since its building started more than seven years ago, major progress has been achieved and a lot of projects have been launched or completed, bringing over $25 billion of direct investment to Pakistan,” he said.

“Last month, the Orange Line, an early harvest project under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, was inaugurated in Lahore, introducing an era of metro train service for Pakistan,” he added.

He said that he completed projects have greatly improved the country’s transport infrastructure and power supply, created more than 70,000 local jobs, contributed 1 to 2 percent to Pakistan’s GDP growth every year, and significantly boosted its socio-economic development and people’s wellbeing.

The spokesperson said that CPEC contributes to not only economic and social development in China and Pakistan but also regional connectivity and common development.

He said nearly 20,000 tonnes of commodities such as wheat, sugar and fertilizer have been transferred via the Gwadar port to Afghanistan since the first half of the year, creating almost 1,000 jobs in this process.

He reiterated that China firmly supports the building of CPEC and will continue working with Pakistan and focus on cooperation in areas like social welfare, industries and agriculture while advancing existing projects.