August 2019 News

China Opposes Unilateral Action In Jammu And Kashmir

9 August 2019
The Hindu
Atul Aneja

Beijing: China on Friday backed the resolution of the Kashmir issue on the basis of the UN Security Council resolutions as well bilateral agreements between India and Pakistan - a veiled reference to the Shimla accord of 1972. Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi, following talks with his counterpart from Pakistan, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, who had arrived on an 'urgent' visit to Beijing in the wake of change of status of the State of Jammu and Kashmir, said that 'China will stand up for justice on the Kashmir issue.' Mr. Wang said that China is 'seriously concerned' about the recent escalation of tensions in Kashmir. 'The Kashmir issue is a dispute left from colonial history. It should be properly and peacefully resolved based on the UN charter, relevant UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreements,' he said. But in a veiled criticism of India, Mr. Wang said that 'China believes that unilateral actions that will complicate the situation should not be taken.' Mr. Qureshi's unscheduled arrival in Beijing, precedes the visit of External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, who arrives in the Chinese capital on August 11 to prepare for an informal summit between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in October. Analysts say that it is certain that the latest development in Jammu and Kashmir will feature in talks between Mr. Jaishankar and Mr. Wang. The State Councilor also noted that Pakistan and India are both China's neighbours and major developing countries that are in a crucial stage of development. 'We call on the two sides to bear in mind their national development and peace in South Asia, properly resolve historical grievances, get rid of the zero-sum mindset, avoid unilateral action and seek a path to peaceful coexistence.' Earlier, in response to a question by The Hindu, on Pakistan's decision to downgrade relations with India, and to take the Kashmir issue to the UN Security Council, the Chinese Foreign Ministry in a written response appeared to criticise India for its 'unilateral' action to change the status quo in Jammu and Kashmir. 'China noted the relevant statement by Pakistan. The pressing priority is that the relevant party should stop unilaterally changing the status quo and avoid escalation of tension.' The statement called upon India and Pakistan 'to resolve disputes through dialogue and negotiation and jointly uphold regional peace and stability.' Mr. Qureshi, during his interaction, briefed Mr. Wang about the Pakistani perceptions of the developments in Kashmir. '(Mr.) Qureshi said that China is Pakistan's friend that has long been trusted, and that friendship between Pakistan and China is rock solid.' Mr. Qureshi hoped that 'China will stand up for justice on the Kashmir issue,' according to the Chinese Foreign Ministry readout. 'Pakistan will continue to resolutely support China's just position on issues concerning China's core interests.'