National Conference on ‘Changing Security Situation in SA & Development of CPEC
Defence Minister Engr Khurram Dastgir Khan, Wednesday, said that there was no room for the self-proclaimed and artificially boosted states in the South Asian security matrix. He further said that there strategic contradictions in the US approach, and most key regional and global players had not supported this declared US policy since it envisaged India to be a Net Security Provider in the region
Addressing the concluding session of the Two-Day National Conference ‘Changing Security Situation in South Asia and Development of CPEC’ here, Defence Minister said that the recently announced US policy on South Asia underscores a greater role for India in Afghanistan and the region, while not acknowledging the exponential contribution, counterterrorism success, and sacrifices of Pakistan for peace and regional stability.
The Minister said that South Asia was undergoing an unprecedented transformation due to globalized economic trends and rising interdependencies, wherein the prosperity and stability of one nation will be indivisible from others. ‘It is home to countries that share much with each other culturally and geographically, but ironically progressing independently rather than in conjunction.
The possible reasons for limited cooperation lies in deep rooted historic political differences due to colonial legacies and territorial disputes which have not allowed the environment of trust to prevail and is being exploited by the extra regional states for their geopolitical interests.
Consequently, political issues and conflicts have not allowed the strategic and economic interests of the region to take precedence. Amidst these complex security threats, China Pakistan Economic Corridor as part of Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a significant flagship project which has gained global attention and has the potential to bring a paradigm shift in the destiny of this entire region.
‘But here the caveat is that peace amongst the regional countries is a pre-requisite for success of this initiative.’ While Pakistan has demonstrated its keen and sincere endeavors to resolve the issue of Kashmir through dialogue in lines with the UN Security Council Resolutions, India has always been shying away from the talks, on one pretext or the other where its new generations continue to carry the banner of Azadi. ‘the success of CPEC hinges on our ability to deal with intricate national security issues, forging national consensus and preventing negative geo-political influences in the region.
Cooperation between Pakistan and China is focused on economic development through connectivity and is not against any other country and seeks to establish and sustain long-lasting and mutually beneficial relationships with the global and regional players,’ he concluded.