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Pak bonds with China, says doesn't need US

Jan 22, 2009 01:00 PM IST India India
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New Delhi: Pakistan is not dependent on America’s financial aid as long as it has China as a friend, the country’s foreign minister has said. Shah Mahmood Qureshi said China has the authority to speak for Pakistan about the post-Mumbai attacks situation. Qureshi, while speaking at a Chinese New Year function in Islamabad, said he had given a "blank cheque" to China's Vice Foreign Minister and told him that Pakistan would endorse whatever he said in New Delhi about the post-Mumbai attacks situation. “Thee way you sent your special envoy to Islamabad and when I was seeing him (Chinese minister) off at the Foreign Office, I said to him you could go to Delhi and you have a blank cheque from us. Whatever you say Pakistan will endorse. That is the level of trust and confidence we have in you,” said Qureshi after the new administration of US President Barack Obama listed out terms for Pakistan to receive financial aid. Qureshi said that relations with China was the cornerstone of Pakistan’s foreign policy and had withstood regional and global changes. Pakistan and China have complete trust, mutual understanding and convergence of views on bilateral, regional and international issues, Qureshi said. The new Obama administration has told Pakistan that it is accountable for the “security in the border region with Afghanistan” and the financial aid it receives would depend upon its performance in the fight against terrorism. "(President Barack) Obama and (Vice President Joe) Biden will increase non-military aid to Pakistan and hold them accountable for security in the border region with Afghanistan," the White House said in its foreign policy agenda document released after Obama took over as President on Tuesday. Pakistan’s envoy to Washington has objected to the statement. "Pakistan hopes that Obama will be more patient while dealing with Pakistan. We will review all options, if Obama does not adopt a positive policy towards us," Hussain Huqqani told Geo TV in Islamabad on Wednesday. According to the envoy, "Bush was more inclined to Pakistan. Obama should hear us out. He must pay attention to other factors in the region." Speaking about Pakistan's role in the war against terror, Huqqani said that Pakistan was an ally of the US and participating in the war against terror was in its own interest. (With inputs from PTI and IANS. )