By: Michael Lein
Obama Must Not Be A Tool To Promote The Indo-Israeli Agenda –
The US Should Not Be Unnerved on Nuclear Deal between China and Pakistan –
Both the countries signed six documents of cooperation in the areas of agriculture, healthcare, justice, media, economy and technology. Chinese President Hu Jintao and President Asif Ali Zardari, while witnessing the signing ceremony that made strategic incentives and alliances even stronger than they were before. On trade cooperation, Jintao said that China would explore new ways to cooperate as well as cement cooperation between the two countries in areas such as energy, transportation, telecommunication, infrastructure and agriculture. Beijing also pledged to provide a grant of 7.3 million dollars to Pakistan for new development projects.
During the two-hour-long talks before the signing ceremony, Jintao and Zardari also vowed to fight the three forces of extremism, separatism and terrorism jointly.
“China is a friend and a strategic partner, committed to the promotion of stability and economic progress of Pakistan.” This is how Jintao summed up the strategic relations.
However, the two leaders discussed a host of issues relating to strategic partnership. The most prominent area of this bolstering of ties — especially for the world is the Sino-Pak civilian nuclear deal which is now beginning to see complete formalisation and initiation. It is unfortunate that the US has expressed its concerns about this deal, where the main goal is to address the acute power crisis in Pakistan. While rejecting US objections, China has once again clarified that it will supply two nuclear reactors to Pakistan under the old nuclear deal.
As regards the legitimacy of Pak-China nuclear deal, Qin Gang, the spokesperson of the Chinese Foreign Ministry has already made it clear, saying: “the nuclear cooperation between the two countries is for peaceful purposes and is totally in consistent with its international obligations and safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).”
It is also regrettable that, until now, we have been denied the same right to civil nuclear technology that India was granted by the US in 2008. It provides the precedent, and in fact, has opened the door for any similar sort of nuclear deal in the future. Indeed, after setting precedent by themselves, both India and the US have no legal and moral grounds to challenge the legality of the Pak-China nuclear deal. It is rather ironic that the ‘original sinner’ was granted a waiver for its transgressions, as India used its civil nuclear technology for the development of nuclear weapons, igniting the nuclear arms race in South Asia.
When Pak-China nuclear deal was initiated in 1986, China was not a part of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) nor had it signed the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) which it did so in 1992 and joined the NSG in 2004. As long as the International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards are not being violated, suspicions are unjustified. Nevertheless, despite international pressures, both Beijing and Islamabad are determined to go ahead in relation to nuclear cooperation and are working towards sustained development in Pakistan. Given the worsening energy crisis in our country and the problems in this area, the fact that China is set to export nuclear reactors is a hugely positive step towards addressing the energy shortage.
China and Pakistan plan on building a rail link, which would pass through Gilgit-Baltistan near the Karakoram Highway. This has sparked a debate in India. In this regard, Indian Minister of State for Defence M M Pallam Raju said, “It is definitely a matter of concern.”
Notably, despite showing more cooperation with our country, the main aim of the US including its allies like India and Israel remains to de-nuclearise Pakistan. Moreover, ideal geo-strategic location of our country with the Gawadar port, linking Central and South Asia entailing Islamabad’s close ties with China pinches the eyes of US, India and Israel which are in collusion to destabilise Pakistan for their common interests. America should not side Indo-Israeli Nexus at the cost of Pakistan; the US has no better ally than Pakistan at least in this region. Any such support would prove suicidal for the American interests, America will find no better and tested ally than Pakistan.