Pakistan said today that the $ 50 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project is for development and aims at improving the population in the region. The CPEC is a planned network of roads, railways and energy projects linking southern Pakistan and Gwadar port with the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.
The Foreign Office spokesman said this in response to a question about the statement by US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis about the CPEC. Mattis had said that the Belts and Roads Initiative “also crosses disputed territory, and that in itself demonstrates the vulnerability of trying to establish that kind of dictation.”
In a globalized world, there are many belts and many roads, and no nation should put itself in a position to dictate “a belt, a road” (OBOR), Mattis had told a Senate Armed Services Committee during a congressional hearing in October 4. Mattis’s comments were widely interpreted as US support for India’s position on OBOR, especially in relation to the $ 50 billion CPEC that is being built through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir ( PoK).
The spokesman for the Foreign Ministry of Pakistan said CPEC is for the betterment of the people and the region. “The CPEC is a project of development and connectivity for the improvement of people in the region and beyond,” the spokesman said.
He said that as far as Kashmir is concerned, efforts should be made to implement UN Security Council resolutions in the region. “The international community must focus on human rights violations and atrocious crimes committed in Kashmir,” the spokesman said.