Pakistan will stand by China against US ‘siege’, says Pak Minister
BEIJING: Pakistan will stand by China if the US ever tries to “besiege” it, Information Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmad has said. He said this while talking to a private television channel in Beijing on Wednesday.

Rashid said that President Pervez Musharraf’s visit to China will open new avenues of development and cooperation between the two countries in all sectors. Pakistan and China have signed 42 bilateral agreements during the president’s current visit, 13 of which have been reached at the government level and 27 are between the traders and entrepreneurs of both countries.

These accords are aimed at boosting cooperation in economy, defence, trade and the social sector. The information minister said that Pakistan and China are jointly manufacturing an F-17 thunder combat aircraft. He said that the test-flight of a second combat plane, an F-10, is scheduled for today (Thursday).

He said that Musharraf told the Chinese leadership that Pakistan wanted full membership of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO). He said that Russian President Vladimir Putin, due to visit China next month, along with the Chinese leadership will help Pakistan acquire SCO membership. Cooperation of other SCO members – Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan – will also be sought, he said.

The president also expressed condolences for the killing of three Chinese engineers in Balochistan, he said. agencies
Posted by: john 2006-02-23