Giving out a clear message to China amid growing unease, India on Wednesday asked China to respect its territorial sovereignty and stressed its ascent should not be seen as a threat to China’s rise.
Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar also criticised Pakistan for blocking SAARC. Reiterating terrorism the most pervasive and serious threat to international security, he rued lack of coherence in dealing with the menace globally, adding pressures to reform the UN so that it can deal with major challenges effectively will only grow with each passing day.
Speaking about China-Pakistan-Economic Corridor (CPEC) which passes through Pakistan occupied-Kashmir, Jaishankar envisioned as the country’s flagship conference on geopolitics and geo-economics, said China should respect India’s territorial sovereignty as Beijing was very sensitive to matters relating to its own sovereignty.
“China is a country which is very sensitive on matters concerning its sovereignty. So we would expect that they would have some understanding of other people’s sensitivity on their sovereignty,” he said addressing the Raisina Dialogue.
Jaishankar’s comments came a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a clear message to China, said both sides should show sensitivity and respect for each other’s core concerns and interests.
Talking about India’s relations with both US and Russia, he said that India’s relations with both the countries were on an upswing and an improvement in US-Russia ties was not against Indian interests.
He also highlighted the bumpy ride of Indo-Sino relations on different political issues. He said China’s power and its expression remain a dynamic factor in Asia.
There has been some noted chill in Sino-India relations following China’s opposition to India’s bid for Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) membership. Also, Beijing blocked India’s move at the UN to designate Masood Azhar a global terrorist.
Adding further on ways to tackle terrorism Jaishankar said “terror is a snake that bites the hand that feeds it.”
Talking about SAARC, Jaishankar said, “We hoped to partially remedy this (Pakistan’s obstuction) through the BBIN (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal) sub-regional grouping.
“It is also our expectation that the current level of enthusiasm among members of BIMSTEC can be channelled towards more far-reaching initiatives.”