VIENNA: China on Thursday asked the international community to respect Pakistan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity nearly three weeks after an American drone strike killed Afghan Taliban chief in Balochistan.
“The international community should fully recognise that and respect Pakistan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” Hong Lei, China’s foreign ministry spokesperson, said on Thursday.
Afghan Taliban chief Mullah Akhtar Mansoor and his chauffeur were killed when the car they were travelling in was targeted in a US drone strike in Naushki district of Balochistan on May 21.
Following a huddle of senior civil and military officials, including Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif and Prime Minister’s Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, Islamabad said that the drone strike was a clear violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty affecting mutual trust, and undermined the spirit of Afghan peace process.
Hong pointed out that Pakistan’s enormous efforts to combat terrorism and support the Afghan reconciliation process needs to be recognised by the international community.
Speaking about the impact of the drone strike on the four-nation Quadrilateral Coordination Group (QCG) which includes Pakistan Afghanistan, US and China, Lei said all stakeholders must work together.
“The QCG is formed to create enabling conditions for the Afghan reconciliation process. All relevant parties should pull together for that goal.”