Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Monday hailed the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), describing it as "the most important initiative of our generation."
Addressing the inauguration ceremony of the first-ever International Gwadar Expo, he emphasized that the CPEC is the most visible part of the One Belt and One Road Initiative.
China came up with its One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative in 2013.
The project comprises a network of railways, roads, and pipelines that would connect Pakistan's port city of Gwadar in the province of Balochistan, with the Chinese city of Kashgar in landlocked Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR).
The human rights activists have, time and again, spoken about and highlighted the growing atrocities of Pakistan on the indigenous people of Balochistan and deteriorating human rights situation as a result of the CPEC.
Last week, while speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Abbasi asserted that the "theme there [WEF] was 'Shared Future in Fractured World', the reality is that in today's world the largest initiative that is mending the fractures is [Chinese] President Xi's vision of taking the historical linkages of yesterday, transposing them onto the fractures of today and creating linkages for tomorrow".
"CPEC, today, for Pakistan is this reality; the Gwadar port, the Gwadar Free Zone, the Eastway expressway and other projects in Gwadar. It is the motorways and the highways that are linking Gwadar to Khunjerab, that are linking Peshawar to Karachi. It is the modernisation of our railway system. It is the establishment of the power projects.and it is the special economic zones that will generate employment, that will create export for Pakistan and that will give prosperity to people of Pakistan," he had remarked.
Earlier this week, the Free Balochistan Movement (FBM) held a two-day protest on January 27 and 28 in London against illegal development by foreign companies in Gwadar.