Imran Khan reiterates his country’s support for the Chinese government regarding its policies in the Muslim-majority Xinjiang province.
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has reiterated his country’s support for the Chinese government over its policies in the Muslim-majority Xinjiang province, while praising the country’s single-party system for offering a model better for societies compared to electoral democracy.
Khan was speaking on Thursday to members of the Chinese media who were visiting Islamabad as part of the celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the Communist Party of China (CCP).
Defense groups accuse China of systematic and widespread “mass internments and tortures representing crimes against humanity” against the Muslim population of southwestern Xinjiang province.
In a report last month, Amnesty International described the situation in Xinjiang as a “dystopian infernal landscape”, citing dozens of eyewitness accounts detailing allegations of brainwashing, torture and erasure of cultural identity.
But Khan, who has regularly called for international action against Islamophobia, especially in European countries, was pleased with the Chinese government’s denials of any abuse of rights.
“Our interaction with Chinese officials, this version of what is happening in Xinjiang, is completely different from the version of how we feel about the Western media and Western governments,” he said Thursday.
“Because we have a very strong relationship with China and because we have a relationship based on trust, we accept the Chinese version. We accept what they say about their programs in Xinjiang. ”
Pakistan shares a long-standing strategic relationship with its northeastern neighbor China, which has invested more than $ 60 billion in the country through the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project.
Khan also praised the one-party system of government in China, where the state is controlled exclusively by the Communist Party of China and there are no direct elections for important positions or the country’s parliament.
“The CPC is a unique model. So far, we have been told that the best way for societies to improve is the Western democratic system, ”said Khan.
“What the CPC has done is that it has provided this alternative model. And they have really hit all Western democracies in the way they have generated merit in their society. “
Khan, who was elected to power in a 2018 general election, said electoral democracy “keeps you going” when it comes to reforms and praised the “flexibility” of the Chinese model.
“Until now, the feeling was that electoral democracy is the best way to get leadership based on merit and then make that leadership responsible. But what the CCP has done is that without this electoral democracy, it has actually achieved much better, ”he said.