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Nawaz Sharif expressed gratitude to the Chinese president in Parliament

21 April, 2015

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ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif expressed his gratitude to the Chinese president and his delegation for their visit to Pakistan.

"You are not just a friend from afar, but one who is so close to our heart," he said. The premier acknowledge Mr Jinping's strong association with Pakistan. "We are friends forever. We are close friends, dear brothers and trusted partners," he said.

He said all political parties of Pakistan have a united stance that Pakistan should have a robust bond with China. The prime minister reiterated his stance on Pakistan's fight against terrorism. "Our joint efforts against terrorism have succeeded so far but we need to intensify our efforts," he said.

He also appreciated China's solidarity with Pakistan in "our quest for peace and stability in South Asia".

Talking about the mega-project of Pakistan-China Economic Corridor, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said, "It is a catalytic project that will help us combine the geo-economic streams of our countries."

"The corridor symbolises our commitment to create win-win partnerships which threaten none and benefit all," he further said.

The premier said young entrepreneurs, academics, media persons, teachers, students and professionals from both countries will sustain their friendship and make it even more productive.

The joint session of the Parliament commenced with the singing of national anthems of China and Pakistan followed by the recitation of the Holy Quran.

NA Speaker Ayaz Sadiq officially thanked the Chinese president and his delegation for visiting Pakistan and their commitment for the prosperity of Pakistan's economy. He referred to President Jinping's visit as "a brother's homecoming".

Mr Jinping arrived at the Parliament along with his squad amid tight security. He was welcomed to the parliament by the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, NA Speaker Ayaz Sadiq and Chairman Senate Mian Raza Rabbani.

The first lady of China Peng Liyuan and the first lady of Pakistan Begum Kulsoom Nawaz also arrived at the parliament.

Soon after his arrival, Mr Jinping was taken to the Chamber of NA speaker Ayaz Sadiq where the Chinese and Pakistani delegations discussed issues of mutual concern.

Speaker NA Ayaz Sadiq welcomed the Chinese delegation and appreciated China's support in Pakistan's fight against terrorism. The Chinese president said Pakistan and China's friendship is transforming into a strategic partnership for the sake of mutual benefit.

In light of today's joint session, galleries of the House have been divided into nine sections. Lawmakers, senior government officials and Chief of Army Staff Gen Raheel Sharif are present in the Parliament House for the occasion.

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