External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna on Sunday said India and China need to move cautiously as the two had emerged as global players.

On Friday night’s appeal by the Chinese embassy in Delhi asking his Ministry to prevent Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama from visiting Arunachal Pradesh, Mr. Krishna told journalists here that the countries had “become mature global players. We have to realise the responsibility cast upon us. We have to tread very cautiously.”

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had fruitful discussions with his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao on Saturday in Thailand. “The friendship and cordiality between India and China are continuing on very healthy trends which are visible. The meeting will go further to strengthen the relationship.”

Mr. Krishna said he was not aware of the Dalai Lama having said in the past that Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh belonged to China. “What I know is that he is a spiritual leader … He is not supposed to air his views on political issues, on issues of boundaries and relationship with other countries. I know that His Holiness the Dalai Lama has stuck to that framework.”

He said the proposed meeting of the Foreign Ministers of India, China, and Russia in Bangalore on Tuesday could discuss both bilateral and trilateral issues.

The Minister did not agree with the views of the former Foreign Secretary, A.P. Venkateswaran, for greater collaboration with Russia to deal more effectively with China. “I think the Indian government has spelt out its stand on every issue raised by Mr. Venkateswaran,” he said.

On the plight of seafarers held hostage by Somalian pirates, Mr. Krishna said the Ministry was in touch with all those concerned.

He said the Government of Pakistan had made an attempt to bring to justice those responsible for the 26/11 Mumbai attacks. But the courts there had slowed down the process. The Minister said he was waiting for further indications of Pakistan moving forward on this “very critical and important area.”

On the attacks on Indian students in Australia, he said that from next year, there would be greater scrutiny of applications by students going to that country. To protect Indians, an elaborate mechanism had been put in place after his visit to Australia.

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