Wednesday, May 31, 2023

India-China relations under exceptional stress: Jaishankar

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar has said that events that took place in eastern Ladakh in 2020 have profoundly disturbed the relationship between India and China.

 “Far from mitigating differences, events of 2020 have actually put our ties under exceptional stress,” said Jaishankar while speaking about eastern Ladakh standoff.

While addressing an online conference on India-China ties, Jaishankar said the ties between India and China is at the crossroads today. He added that choices that are made will have a huge impact not only for the two nations but also for the entire world.

Actions of China in eastern Ladakh not only indicated a disregard for commitment regarding decreasing troop level but also showed an inclination towards violating peace and tranquillity, noted Jaishankar. “We are yet to receive a credible explanation for the change in China’s stance or reason for the massing of troops.”

While delivering a keynote address at the 13th All India Conference of China Studies, Jaishankar outlined seven broad principles for repairing the relationship between New Delhi and Beijing.

  1. Agreements that have already reached on regarding the management of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) must be obeyed in their entirety, and in letter and spirit. “Whether handling of the border areas is concerned, the Line of Actual Control must be strictly observed and respected. Any attempt to unilaterally change the status quo is completely unacceptable,” he said.
  2. Noting that both India and China are committed to a multipolar world, Jaishankar underlined that there should be a recognition that a multipolar Asia is one of its crucial consequences. “Obviously each state will have its interests, concerns and priorities, but sensitivity to them cannot be one-sided. At the end of the day, relationships between major states are reciprocal in nature,” he said.
  3. He added that peace in border areas is the ground for “overall development of ties with China” and if that peace is disturbed, “so inevitably is rest of relationship”.
  4. The external affairs minister said far from mitigating already existing differences, events of 2020 have actually put the relationship under “exceptional stress”
  5. The minister further underlined that if ties between New Delhi and Beijing are to be steady and progress, “policies must take into account learning of the last three decades”. “Experiences of the past have taught us the importance of stabilising our relationship (with China) even while adjusting to changes. From that, we can seek proper guidance that will be to the benefit of both nations,” said the External Affairs Minister.
  6. “Development of ties can only be based on mutuality such as mutual respect, mutual sensitivity, mutual interest,” said Jaishankar while talking about India’s ties with China.
  7. The minister further said that any belief that the situation at the border “can be brushed aside and life can carry on undisturbed” is clearly not rational.

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