India, China don’t want war and confrontation, have wisdom to resolve dispute: Chinese envoy

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NEW DELHI: The border dispute with India is a bilateral issue and foreign interference will not help solve the problems, Chinese Charge d’Affaires Ma Jia said in New Delhi on Wednesday.

Speaking to reporters, Ma Jia said, “The border issue between India and China is a bilateral one. Both countries have the wisdom to resolve it, we can handle that. We don’t invite any other, especially from other regions, to interfere in this bilateral dispute”. On whether foreign interference is helpful to resolve the issue, she said, “Anytime you see there is interference in bilateral dispute, on the contrary, it will not help the two sides to solve the problems”.

Commenting on External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar’s remarks that the situation at the India-China border is fragile, the Chinese envoy said, “Jaishankar says that situation now is fragile, that’s what we are talking, that’s what senior commander and diplomats are talking and discussing about. There are difficulties, we have to face it”.

The Chinese envoy’s remarks came after Jaishankar, at the India Today Conclave on March 18, made a comment on the India-China border issue and said, “The situation, to my mind, remains very fragile because there are places where our deployments are very close, and, in military assessment, actually quite dangerous”.

Further, Ma Jia added, “China and India don’t want a war, neither of us wants a war, neither of us wants a confrontation along the border areas. So, I think as long as we have these kinds of intentions, understanding of each other, we can find a way out. We have some difficulties, the border issue is very complicated, it has a leftover of history for many years, so it is not easy to reach an agreement. We have to face the problem, we have to talk, the intention of the two sides is to improve the situation, our two leaders have consensus on that, we can find a way out.”

Expressing her views on reports of China building huge infrastructure along the border, the Chinese envoy said that as a government, it is their responsibility to build infrastructure for civil and military purposes and countries must have mutual trust and there are channels to build this trust. She also said the Indian side is also building huge infrastructure in the past few years.

The Chinese Charge Charge d’Affaires called mutual trust a “crucial thing”. She said, “Crucial thing is mutual trust. If we have diplomatic and military channels to keep the channels smooth and explain to each other about what is the intention, that would be helpful to increase the mutual trust between the two sides, especially between the two militaries”.

“I think that is very crucial, we have already solved some problems through these channels, we finished some disengagement in some points, we can gradually solve these problems. We have to understand, as a government, we have a responsibility to build infrastructure to be used for civil and military purposes”, she added.

Speaking on the growing ties among Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) nations comprising of Japan, Australia, India and the US, the Chinese envoy said that Beijing does not oppose any kind of regional or international cooperation if it is in the interest of the people and the country in the region.

Commenting on the growing partnership among the Quad nations, the Chinese envoy said, “We don’t oppose any kind of regional or international cooperation if it is in the interest of people and country in this region, but we oppose those small circles composed for the purpose of geopolitical intentions for the containment of China. So we are hopeful all the cooperation are helpful to the world and the region”.

Ma Jia said that China supports India’s G20 presidency and Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) and expressed hope for positive outcomes. She stressed that India has been trying very hard to bring everyone together, but the job is very tough.

Speaking on why there was no consensus reached during G20 foreign ministers’ meeting, the envoy said, “I have personally attended the G20 foreign affairs meeting, I could see that everybody from the US and western countries was talking about Ukraine. They don’t have time to talk about other G20 agenda, so this is like overwhelming”.

She further said, “At the Bali summit, we already had a similar thing, but finally they reached some kind of accommodation in a joint statement. Nowadays, the situation has intensified, so it becomes more difficult to reach accommodation. So you are out of the track of discussing prominent security issues in the economic and financial platform”.

“It’s very difficult to reach consensus… It’s not that China and Russia stand together. We are having a very strong belief that G20 should talk about economic and financial problems and what we have to face. We can see that G20 has shouldered the responsibility to do something. It’s not just Ukraine and I think India has played a very crucial role and India has been trying very hard to bring everyone together, but the job is very tough. We support India’s presidency, we also hope G20 and SCO have fruitful outcomes this year”.

While speaking to reporters regarding Chinese President Xi Jinping’s participation at G20 and SCO in India, Ma Jia said, “We have already received an invitation. I don’t have too much information right now because it is still several months away, and the date is still under discussion. So that is why I don’t have very specific information right now to tell you whether the Chinese leader will come or not, we will keep you informed”. (ANI)

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