RAWALPINDI: Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan, Nong Rong, today (Monday) called on Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa at the General Headquarters (GHQ) to discuss the recent bus tragedy in Kohistan.
During the meeting, the Chinese ambassador and COAS Bajwa stressed the need to “thwart designs of all inimical forces challenging the resolve of Pakistan and China, particularly strategic cooperation between the two sides.”
The army chief extended heartfelt sympathies and deepest condolences to the government of China and its people on the incident, underlining that “Pakistan Army greatly values its brotherly relations” with its time-tested friend.
He also assured full cooperation and security of Chinese citizens working in Pakistan. Both the sides agreed on the need for continuous engagement and coordination for peace and stability in the region.
The meeting was held after July 14 incident in which nine Chinese nationals and four locals were killed when a coach carrying them to an under-construction tunnel site fell into a ravine in the Upper Kohistan area after an explosion.
Later, a team comprising at least 15 Chinese investigators had also arrived in Pakistan and joined the officials probing the incident. Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid had on July 17 said the investigation was in the final stages and the highest institutions of Pakistan were probing it.
Following the development, Spokesperson Ministry of Foreign Affairs Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri had said work on the Dasu hydropower project would resume soon as both Pakistan and China remain committed to the timely completion of the project as well as others being undertaken with Chinese cooperation.