Beijing: China practically humiliated Pakistani premier Imran Khan while the latter landed in Beijing on a four-day visit to participate in the Belt and Road Forum meeting.

Khan was received at the airport not even by a minister of the People’s Republic of China, but by the deputy secretary-general of the Beijing Municipal Committee of CPPCC, Li Lifeng. She was also accompanied by Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan, Yao Jing, and Pakistan’s Ambassador to China, Masood Khalid.

The all-weather friendship between the two countries seems to have veered towards an unequal exchange where China is the lender while Pakistan is just a borrower.

This is Khan’s second visit to China. He had visited China last year November, but China had denied any quick-fix lending to the country.

Khan was accompanied by Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed and Water Resources Minister Muhammad Faisal Vawda, apart from Finance Advisor Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, Advisor on Commerce Abdul Razaq Dawood, and Dr Atta-ur-Rehman, Chairman of the Task Force on Science and Technology.

According to international protocol practice, a visiting dignitary is received by another from the host country with matching designation and clout. In diplomacy protocols reflect the value of the visitor, and going by that standard, China sure has shown Pakistan and Khan their place.