China today backed its all-weather ally Pakistan and called on the international community to support its counter terrorism efforts after Prime Minister Narendra Modi described the neighbouring country as a “terror export factory”. “Terrorism is the enemy faced by all. The international community should work together to fight against it,” foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said during a media briefing here, when asked about China’s response to Modi terming Pakistan as a “terror export factory” during a speech in London. “We hope the international community could support the efforts made by Pakistan in counter terrorism and forge effective cooperation with it in that regard,” Hua said putting up a strong defence for China’s all-weather ally.
While speaking at the ‘Bharat Ki Baat, Sabke Saath’ programme at the iconic Central Hall Westminster in London on Wednesday, warning Pakistan, Modi had said India will not tolerate those who export terror and will respond to them in the language they understand, referring to the 2016 surgical strikes conducted across the LoC. “When someone has put a terror export factory in place and makes attempts to attack us from the back, Modi knows how to answer in the same language,” he had said.
Hua’s comment also came ahead of the meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) here, to be held early next week. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj is arriving here tomorrow to take part in the meeting to be held on April 24. She is due to meet her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi on Sunday. Separately Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman too will attend the SCO Defence Ministers meeting on the same day.
These are the first meetings of the SCO after India and Pakistan were admitted into the eight-member group in which China and Russia plays an influential role. Both events are to be attended by the respective Ministers from Pakistan. SCO consists China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan.
Modi is also due to attend this year’s SCO summit to be held in the Chinese city of Qingdao in June. Hua said issues related to terrorism will be discussed at the meeting of SCO Foreign Ministers. “We believe it is a purpose of the SCO to promote relevant cooperation in that field. Security has been a priority of the SCO since its inception,” she said.
“So the upcoming SCO Foreign Ministers meeting will see participants exchanging views on the relevant issues, major international and regional issues and all the participants will uphold the Shanghai sprit to consolidate more consensus and to move forward the development of the SCO,” she said.