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Chinese FM’s Kashmir remark fouls the air in his planned India visit

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(TibetanReview.net, Mar24’22) – The proposed visit to India by China’s Foreign Minister and State Councillor Mr Wang Yi began on a bad taste in India’s mouth caused by his remark in support of Pakistan on the Kashmir issue at the inauguration in Islamabad on Mar 22 of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Foreign Ministers’ meeting.

“On Kashmir, we have heard again today the calls of many of our Islamic friends. And China shares the same hope,” the indianexpress.com Mar 24 quoted Wang, a special invitee to the event, as having said.

“We reject the uncalled reference to India by the Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi during his speech at the Opening Ceremony,” the report quoted India’s Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi as saying.

It is quite unusual to name a Foreign Minister while criticising a statement, and this reflects the hardening of position in New Delhi, the report noted.

“Matters related to the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir are entirely the internal affairs of India. Other countries, including China, have no locus standi to comment. They should note that India refrains from public judgement of their internal issues,” Bagchi has said.

India usually does not criticise China over its internal issues including those related to Taiwan, Tibet, Hong Kong, human rights violations and atrocities against Uyghurs in Xinjiang province. So, this is a stern message to Beijing from New Delhi, the report said.

The 48th Council of the Foreign Ministers (CFMs) of the OIC concluded in Islamabad today.

While some reports suggested that Wang would visit India over Mar 24-25, others said it was yet to be confirmed.

Wang Yi, China’s foreign minister and state councillor. (Photo courtesy: SCMP)

New Delhi’s rejection of Wang’s comments came in the midst of hectic consultations between the two sides over a possible visit by him to New Delhi within two days, noted the ndtv.com Mar 23.

Wang’s comment was nothing new. China has time and again reiterated its support to the stand of Pakistan – its strategic ally – on the matter of Jammu and Kashmir, the report said.

It pointed out that on Feb 6, India rejected the references to Jammu & Kashmir in a China-Pakistan joint statement, asserting that the region as well as the Union Territory of Ladakh “have been, are and will” remain integral and inalienable parts of India.

Also, in July last year, China had reiterated its support to Pakistan on the issue of Jammu & Kashmir, saying it opposed any unilateral action which could complicate the situation.

Besides, while India condemns Pakistan for its involvement in terrorism, especially Jammu & Kashmir, including by running camps for training terrorists for infiltration into Kashmir, Wang has said the world should acknowledge Pakistan’s efforts for regional peace and stability, according to the tribune.com.pk Mar 24.

The report said Wang made the remark during a meeting with Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa.

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