Coming to the defence of its “all-weather ally” Pakistan after Prime Minister Narendra Modi called it a “mother-ship of terrorism”, China on Monday said that it is against linking any country or religion with terror and asked the world to acknowledge the Islamic country’s “great sacrifices”.
In a sharp reaction to a question about Modi’s characterisation of Pakistan at the BRICS Summit in Goa, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said China is opposed to linking any country to terrorism.
Answering a question on Modi’s criticism of Islamabad in aiding and abetting terror groups targeting India, she said, “…on counter-terrorism, China’s position is consistent”.
“It is the same way we oppose linking terrorism with any specific country or religion,” she said.
“We oppose terrorism in all forms and we believe that international concerted efforts are needed to ensure stability and security of all countries,” Chunying added.
Calling China and Pakistan “all-weather friends” she said, “We oppose linking terrorism with any specific ethnicity or religion. This is our long-standing position.”
Noting that India and Pakistan are “all victims of terrorism”, she said Islamabad has made “great sacrifice to combat terrorism and this needs to be recognised by the international community”.
“As per the problem between India and Pakistan, both the two countries are close neighbours of China. We truly hope that they can resolve these differences in a peaceful way through dialogue and consultation, so that India and Pakistan relations can develop. This serves the interest of the two countries and the region,” she said.
Modi had on Sunday hit out at Pakistan, without mentioning its name, saying the "mother-ship of terrorism" was in India's neighbourhood which was linked to terror modules across the world.
"In our own region, terrorism poses a grave threat to peace, security and development. Tragically, the mother-ship of terrorism is a country in India's neighbourhood. Terror modules around the world are linked to this mothership," Modi said at the at the restricted BRICS leaders' meet attended by Presidents Vladimir Putin of Russia, Xi Jinping of China, Jacob Zuma of South Africa and Michel Temer of Brazil.