ISLAMABAD - Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Ma Zhaoxus said Pakistan is at the important forefront in the international counter-terrorism campaign and has made outstanding contributions in combating terrorism. China and Pakistan are friendly neighbours and have conducted sound cooperation in the field of counter-terrorism. The Chinese side will continue to strengthen cooperation with Pakistan in jointly cracking down on the 'evil forces, so as to safeguard security and stability in both countries as well as in the region, the spokesman said while answering a question about cooperation between the two countries in counter-terrorism. This was stated in a press release issued by the Chinese Embassy here on Wednesday. Reuters adds: The spokesperson praised Pakistan as a firm partner against terror and religious extremism, playing down the risk that ties could be strained by an attack that Chinese officials blamed on militants trained in Pakistan. The ministrys statement was its first response to the attack in Kashgar city in Chinas far western Xinjiang region on Sunday, when a group of Uighur men killed a restaurant owner and waiter, and then hacked to death four people. But the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman, Ma Zhaoxu, said his government stood by Pakistan, in comments apparently intended to quash any notion of a rift over the attack in Xinjiang, where members of the Uighur minority have protested against Beijings control and the Han Chinese presence. Ma did not mention the Xinjiang attack in his comments. China and Pakistan are friendly neighbours, and we have developed healthy cooperation in the anti-terror area, he said. China will continue strengthening cooperation with Pakistan in fighting what both sides deem to be dangerous extremism, added Ma. On Monday, the Pakistani foreign ministry issued a statement offering full support to China after the attack. Pakistan shares a border with China, and Uighurs, including opponents of Chinese rule, have fled there in the past.