China and Pakistan have traditional friendship ties and their armies are also friends of all weather, said a Chinese military chief Monday at the conclusion of the eight-day Pakistan-China Joint Exercise Friendship-2006.
"For many years Pakistan and China have focused on economic development and regional stability. At the same time, we are confronting the three evil forces, terrorism, extremism and separatism. China is ready to conduct anti-terrorism with Pakistan to construct the area of lasting peace and mutual prosperity," said Lieutenant General Lu Dengming, Chief of Staff of the Chengdu military region of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA).
The Pakistani army is highly professional outfit and he and other members of his entourage and the participating troops are highly impressed with the professionalism, dedication and commitment of the Pakistani troops during conduct of joint exercise friendship 2006, Lu told a group of journalists in Rawalpindi, some 30 kms south from Islamabad.
Speaking on the occasion, Lieutenant General Tariq Majid, Corps Commander Rawalpindi said that Pakistan-China Joint Exercise, Friendship-2006, "is a manifestation of our resolve that Pakistan and China stand united to fight and eliminate the menace of terrorism, which is affecting the entire fabric of human society".
Majid said that the joint exercise epitomized high standards of professionalism and helped refine the combat skills earning great respect and admiration for each other's skills and competence.
The mutual rapport and personal understanding that has been developed during the course of this exercise would go a long way in cementing long lasting friendly relationship between Pakistan and China, he said.
"Both Pakistan and China are playing very important role in international efforts to make the globe more secure, so that our future generations may live in peace and prosperity," he said.
Majid said that first ever exercise conducted by the PLA in Pakistan "is a mark of distinction in our bilateral relations and both armies and countries wish to continue with such exercises in future as well".
The two sides have expressed their complete satisfaction on the successful completion of the eight-day joint exercise, which is likely to expand in level and scope in future and would definitely help combat terrorism more effectively.
The exercise has ushered both the brotherly countries into new dimensions of mutual trust and cooperation in the military field and will go a long way in further strengthening and cementing the traditional friendship between both countries.
Earlier a colorful closing ceremony marked the end of the joint exercise in the mountainous region in Abbottabad, some 120 kms northwest from Islamabad.
(China.org.cn, Xinhua News Agency December 19, 2006)