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Xi mooted trilateral partnership with Pak.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the second India-China informal summit.   | Photo Credit: AP

Within days of the second India-China “informal summit”, Chinese Foreign Minister and State Councilor Wang Yi has said that Chinese President Xi Jinping had shared with Prime Minister Narendra Modi his vision for trilateral cooperation among Beijing, New Delhi and Islamabad.

“In Chennai, President Xi Jinping had in-depth communication on the regional situation with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and encouraged all parties concerned to solve the current issues through dialogue,” Mr. Wang told presspersons who had travelled to India and Nepal to cover Mr. Xi’s October 11-13 visit.

“President Xi Jinping stressed the Chinese side sincerely expects sound China-India relations, China-Pakistan relations and India-Pakistan relations, and expects to see all sides work together to promote regional peace and stability, and achieve common development and prosperity.”

Advocating a trilateral approach, Mr. Wang said that none of the three countries — China, India or Pakistan — should target or be influenced by a “third party”.

“China’s respective relations with India, Pakistan and other South Asian countries, with respective unique history and characteristics, can run in parallel and develop together, neither targeting any third party nor being influenced by a third party,” he said.

In a veiled reference to Kashmir after India scrapped special status for Jammu and Kashmir, Mr. Wang said “the recent strained India-Pakistan relations and unrest and turbulence in the region have drawn grave concerns from the international community.”

In-depth communication

“In Chennai, President Xi Jinping had in-depth communication on the regional situation with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and encouraged all parties concerned to solve the current issues through dialogue.”

China’s top diplomat also spotlighted the fact that prior to his visit to India and Nepal, “President Xi Jinping listened to the views and propositions of the Pakistani side in his meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan of Pakistan.” Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa, and head of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lt. Gen. Faiz Hameed had arrived separately in Beijing between October 7 and 8 and departed just before Mr. Xi embarked for Chennai on October 11.

“Both India and Pakistan are friendly neighbours of China, and the Chinese side hopes that the two countries can properly manage and control differences and improve their relations, “ Mr. Wang said.

The Chinese Foreign Minister stressed that Mr. Xi had elaborated on enhancing the “China-India Plus” formulation, which could be gradually expanded to cover other countries in South Asia, Southeast Asia and Africa on the basis of the existing “China-India-Afghanistan” cooperation.

During the first ‘informal summit’ in Wuhan, India and China had decided to work together on a project in Afghanistan which led to coordinated training of Afghan diplomats by India and China. The Chinese President, during his talks with Mr. Modi, had also proposed that “China and India should play a leading role in regional connectivity construction, and create a smoother connectivity network”.

Mr. Wang said that the two leaders had arrived at a “positive consensus” to work together to contribute to an early conclusion of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) — an ASEAN centred trade bloc, which, apart from India and China, includes Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand.

The Chinese foreign minister said that President Xi had embarked on a new “neighbourhood diplomacy” focusing on “long term development of relations” based on a “historical perspective, a strategic perspective and a realistic perspective.”

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Printable version | Oct 28, 2020 3:06:33 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/xi-mooted-trilateral-partnership-with-pak/article29713793.ece

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