Coronavirus epidemic: ‘Pakistan’s noevacuation decision vote of confidence for China’

BEIJING: Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi has termed Pakistan’s decision to not hastily evacuate Pakistani nationals in Wuhan, the centre of a deadly coronavirus outbreak, “a vote of confidence for China.”

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“China will continue to ensure safety & health of Pakistani brothers & sisters & provide them with all necessary assistance,” an official of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, China, quoted him as saying that in a series of tweets.

The Twitter statement came in the wake of Friday’s telephonic conversation between Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and his Chinese counterpart.

“State Councilor & Foreign Minister Wang Yi had a phone call with Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi. Qureshi first conveyed PM Imran Khan’s best wishes to Premier Li Keqiang. He expressed Pakistan’s strong support for China’s efforts to contain the outbreak,” read the statement.

FM Qureshi expressed Pakistan’s readiness to do its best to help China overcome this challenge as Pakistan will be sending a military aircraft carrying assistance supplies to China soon and that the people of Pakistan stand by the brotherly Chinese people during this difficult time.

Qureshi said, while the world has lauded China’s timely and effective response, some elements are trying to create panic, which Pakistan strongly opposes, adding the government of Pakistan trusts that China is fully capable of ensuring safety and health of foreign nationals in China.

He was further quoted as saying that Pakistan appreciated China is taking care of Pakistani nationals in China like its own. “Pakistan firmly believes that under the leadership of President Xi Jinping, the Chinese people will win the battle against the outbreak as soon as possible.”

The statement said: “Wang Yi passed on Premier Li Keqiang’s greetings to PM Imran Khan. He said that under the direct leadership of President Xi Jinping, China has put in place a nationwide mechanism & taken decisive measures to contain & mitigate the outbreak.”

Wang Yi said, with all measures falling into place, China has the capacity, confidence and determination to win the final victory. China and Pakistan are close neighbors with a fine tradition of mutual support and assistance.

He said, at a time when the Chinese people are facing difficulties, Pakistan is doing its utmost to help, which once again speaks volumes about the deep friendship between the two countries.

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