China Doesn’t Want To Annoy India On Kashmir

China Doesn’t Want To Annoy India On Kashmir

24 June 2012
Rising Kashmir
Sheikh Ahmed

Beijing: China has asserted that it has no intention to meddle in Jammu and Kashmir, arguing that if the contentious issue is not handled carefully it may have negative impact on the country’s bilateral relations with India. Maintaining that J&K is a disputed area between India and Pakistan, China has also expressed hope that two neighbours will be able to resolve the issue bilaterally and peacefully. 'Our stand is clear. Jammu and Kashmir is a disputed area between India and Pakistan. It is a sensitive issue. China is handling this sensitive issue carefully to avoid any misunderstanding. It is an issue of sovereignty. India has a clear stand on this dispute,” Senior Col Geng Yansheng, Spokesman and Director General of the Information Department of the Chinese Ministry of Defence told a group of visiting journalists from New Delhi. It was in this context that Beijing refused permission to General Officer in Command of the Udhampur based Northern Command of Lt Gen B S Jaswal to visit China in August 2010, which triggered a major diplomatic row between India and China. In January 2010 during the annual defence dialogue, India and China agreed that the General Rank officer will head a delegation to visit China and Lt Gen Jaswal was asked to lead it. Sr Col Geng Yansheng said Lt Gen Jaswal's jurisdiction also covered the 'disputed Jammu and Kashmir'. However, to respect India's sentiments, the Chinese government offered that Lt Gen Jaswal could be made member of the defence delegation rather than the leader, which was not acceptable to New Delhi. 'If we would have accepted him (Lt Gen Jaswal) it could have put China in a diplomatic difficulty.” Earlier, Chinese side also issued staple visas to residents of Jammu and Kashmir. However, it appears that the issue has been resolved by the two countries when External Affairs Minister took up the matter with the Chinese government on several occasions in the past. Major General Yao Yunzhu,Director of the Academy of Military Sciences was also present at the meetings. Sr Col Yansheng said India and China are two major emerging powers in the world and it is in their benefit to work together for the promotion of peace and tranquility in the world. “If the relations between two countries are not handled carefully and properly there may be negative impact in the bilateral relations.” He also favoured opening a new chapter in defence relations between two countries. “Both sides have conducted joint military and naval exercises besides undertaking mountaineering expedition. Recently Indian Naval ships visited Shanghai Naval base. One of the challenges before us is to enhance mutual trust and level of cooperation. However, he admitted that there some problems, which hinder mutual cooperation.”