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Nepal reassures China on ‘one China’ policy when pressed on US Under Secretary’s visit to Tibetan camps

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(TibetanReview.net, May26’22) – Following the three-day visit of Under Secretary for Civilian Security, Democracy and Human Rights and Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues Ms Uzra Zeya, China has made it clear to Nepal on May 25 that its One-China policy should not be affected by any other factors—internal or external, reported the kathmandupost.com May 26. The occasion was the 14th meeting of Nepal-China Bilateral Consultative Mechanism, led by the foreign secretary of Nepal and the vice minister of the Foreign Ministry of China.

The Chinese side expressed their reservations about Zeya’s visits to at least two Tibetan camps in Nepal, the report cited at least two participants in the meeting as saying.

The Nepali side was stated to have reconveyed to the Chinese side that Nepal strongly adhered to the One-China policy and it was committed to not allowing its soil against its neighbours.

“The Chinese side appreciated Nepal’s commitment,” the report quoted an official as saying.

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The report said that during her meeting with Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, Foreign Minister Narayan Khadka, Home Minister Khand and other officials, Zeya had raised the issue of documentation of Tibetan refugees living in Nepal.

The report noted that the Nepal government had stopped issuing refugee cards to Tibetans in 1995. It cited Tibetan refugee leaders as saying as many as 7,000 Tibetan refugees did not have the identification document.

Home Minister Khand was stated to have told Zeya that Nepal was sensitive towards security concerns of India and China.

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Meanwhile, Nepal’s main opposition CPN-UML has hit out at the Sher Bahadur Deuba government over Zeya’s visits to Tibetan refugee camps.

UML chair KP Sharma Oli, who was the China-backed Prime Minister of Nepal until recently, has claimed that Zeya had incited Tibetan refugees by visiting their camps.

Speaking at the Parliament meeting held at the Parliament building on May 25, Oli has said, “It is highly objectionable to allow the US Under Secretary of State to visit the Tibetan refugee camp in Nepal.”

Oli accused the government of trying to deviate from one-China policy, reported theannapurnaexpress.com May 25.

CPN-UML lawmaker Bhim Rawal was reported to have demanded that a protest proposal should be endorsed against the US Under Secretary of State’s meeting with Tibetan refugee leaders. He has said the party Chairman will raise the issue in the Parliament meeting the next day.

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Meanwhile, China is apparently satisfied with Nepal reassurance. Nepal firmly adheres to the one-China principle, and will never allow any forces to use its territory for anti-China separatist activities, China’s official globaltimes.cn May 26 cited the Nepali side as saying during the virtual meeting with Chinese Assistant Foreign Minister Wu Jianghao at the 14th meeting of China-Nepal diplomatic consultation.

At the meeting, the two sides discussed the entire spectrum of the Nepal-China ties including expediting China-funded projects in Nepal and projects under the Belt and Road Initiative, among others.

“We exchanged views on the BRI but there is no concrete progress on it,” the kathmandupost.com report quoted a Nepali participant as saying. “Since the project implementation plan remains uncertain, no progress will be achieved on the BRI front in near future.”

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