China Tries To Mollify India Over Indo-Pak Reference

China on Thursday tried to pacify India on a controversial reference in the Sino-US joint statement, saying that it was not trying to meddle in Indo-Pak ties.  Responding to a question on what China thought
china tries to mollify india over indo pak...
PTI November 19, 2009 22:24 IST

China on Thursday tried to pacify India on a controversial reference in the Sino-US joint statement, saying that it was not trying to meddle in Indo-Pak ties. 

Responding to a question on what China thought was its role in India-Pakistan relationship, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang tried to downplay the significance of the Sino-US joint statement and said Beijing hopes for "gradual improvement" in Indo-Pak ties. 

 "China hopes for a gradual improvement in the relations between India and Pakistan. As long as it is good for the stability of the region, China will support the relevant moves," Qin said at a press briefing, the first after US President Barack Obama returned after his maiden state visit. 

"We believe that India and Pakistan are important countries in South Asia," he said and went on to explain that China highly values its bilateral ties with both countries. 

India had reacted sharply to the Sino-US joint statement.

"A third country role cannot be envisaged nor is it necessary," External Affairs Ministry Spokesman said in a terse comment yesterday on the joint statement issued on the conclusion of talks between US President Barack Obama and his Chinese counterpart Hu Jintao on Tuesday. 

Obama and Hu had voiced support for the improvement in Indo-Pak ties and their readiness to promote peace and stability in the region, listing the situation in South Asia among regional and global challenges. 

Answering a question on the Indo-US nuclear deal, Qin said that China and the US did not discuss it during Obama's talks with the Chinese leadership. 

"To the best of my knowledge, this issue was not touched upon during two Presidents discussions," the spokesman said. At the same time, he restated China's position saying that the "relevant countries" are free to enjoy the right for peaceful use of nuclear energy as along as they adhered to the objective of non-proliferation. 

On a question on the vexed Sino-Indian boundary issue, Qin did not give a direct reply when asked whether China had dispute on the land boundary with just one country, India. 

He replied that the dispute with India was "more pronounced" but he did not have information about land border disputes with other countries.

His comments came as the Chinese media reported today that China has settled its land boundary dispute with Vietnam, It had earlier said that the boundary dispute with Russia has been fully settled. 

Qin noted that on territorial issues, China sought to resolve disputes through friendly consultations. He said China hoped to resolve the border issue with India using the same principle. 

He noted that in recent years, Sino-Indian relations have constantly improved and both sides realise that the border issue should not affect the overall development of relations between the two countries. 

He also noted that till the two countries completely resolved the boundary issue, the two sides should make efforts to maintain peace and tranquillity in border areas. PTI

Related Tags: ChinaIndiaIndo-Pak
 
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