China circumvents questions related to CPEC traversing through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir

Claudine Rigal
Mai 19, 2017

"China and Pakistan have signed memorandums of understanding to increase the speed of the railway connecting Karachi and Peshawar, as well as upgrade its signal system and railway stations", Zafaruddin Mahmood, Pakistan's special envoy on the CPEC, told the China Daily. The minister who now is visiting China alongside Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and plays a pivotal role as far as the CPEC is concerned, stated that the government could not release the entire plan (LTP) without consultation with the Chinese.

"We keep saying that the Belt and Road is an open and inclusive initiative".

"I think we have already had so much discussion on this issue".

The first principle of Panchsheel enunciated by India and China in 1954 speaks of "mutual respect for each other's territorial integrity and sovereignty".

But the two neighbours fought a brief war in 1962. As pointed out by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the CPEC would also be instrumental in addressing some of the root causes of extremism and terrorism by way of generating economic and employment opportunities as well as interaction of people of backward areas with people from other parts of the country and regional countries.

India has been expressing concern over the CPEC project which links China's Muslim dominated Xinjiang province to the Gwadar deep-sea port in Pakistan. We encourage India and Pakistan to settle this dispute peacefully and through dialogues."The Belt and Road Forum (BRF) in Beijing was attended by leaders of 29 countries".

India skipped the Belt and Road forum in Beijing in opposition to the CPEC.

In his address on Sunday, Mr. Xi had said that five principles of peaceful coexistence - the brainchild of China, India and Myanmar in the 1950s - should be the mantra for advancing the Belt and Road Initiative and as a vehicle for achieving sustainable globalisation. "Regarding the issue of Kashmir which the Indian side is concerned about, we have been stressing that the Belt and Road is a cooperation initiative for the common development and prosperity of the region".

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