As Beijing marked the centenary of the ruling Communist Party, Prime Minister Imran Khan Thursday said Pakistan will not accept any pressure to either change or downgrade its relations with China. “The United States expects Pakistan to choose a side. This is not appropriate,” the prime minister said in an interaction with Chinese media in Islamabad. “The relationship between Pakistan and China is very deep, it’s not just between the governments, but it’s a people-to-people relationship,” he said. “Whatever will happen [the] relationship between our two countries, no matter what pressure is put on us, is not going to change,” he said in response to a question. Imran Khan said that Islamabad accepts Beijing’s version regarding the treatment of Uighurs in China’s Xinjiang province. He said that the Chinese version is completely different from what is being reported in Western media. “Because of our extreme proximity and relationship with China, we actually accept the Chinese version,” he added. The prime minister said that it is hypocritical that while Uighur and Hong Kong are being highlighted, attention is not being given to the human rights violations in occupied valley of Kashmir. “It is hypocritical. There are much worse human rights violations taking place in other parts of the world such as in occupied Kashmir. But Western media hardly comments on this,” he lamented. The prime minister mentioned the US-sponsored regional alliance – ‘Quad’ including India and a couple of other countries – and said it is part of great power rivalry in the region that could create problems. The prime minister said when Pakistan was in trouble politically or internationally or had conflicts with its neighbour, China always stood with it. “You remember friends who stand with you in all times. In good times, everyone stands with you but in difficult, tough, and bad times, you remember those people who stood by you,” he maintained. About China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the prime minister said it is ‘the biggest thing happening in Pakistan’. He said a committee has been formed to oversee the CPEC projects and ensure the removal of any impediments. For the very purpose, he is scheduled to visit Gwadar next week to oversee the projects, he added. Prime Minister Khan said he also looked forward to his visit to China soon to strengthen the political and economic ties. Felicitating the Communist Party of China on 100th anniversary, Imran Khan said Pakistan considers President Xi Jinping as one of the greatest statesmen of modern world for his commitment to fighting corruption, establishing rule of law and steering around 700 million people out of poverty. To a question, the prime minister said the CPC is a unique and alternate model parallel to the electoral democratic system. He said the CPC has introduced an efficient system of sifting talent and grooming it up which is more remarkable than the electoral democracy. Imran Khan also appreciated the flexibility in the system of CPC to adapt to changes and mend its policies according to the needs which helped quick development of China. He said having gone through the political process from village level to the national level, both Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang were well aware of the people’s problems. “This is something unique for China. You don’t see this in many other electoral democracies,” he remarked.