July 13, 2017

China offers productive role in improving Pak-India ties

ISLAMABAD: China said on Wednesday that it was willing to play a "constructive role" in improving relations between Pakistan and India, especially after the increased hostility along the Line of Control (LoC) saying the situation in Kashmir has attracted "international" attention.

Pakistan has welcomed the Chinese offer and expressed hope that India wouldn’t hesitate in accepting it for the sake of regional and world peace. Well placed sources in the Foreign Office told The News here on Wednesday evening that Chinese concern about the situation could be understood since it has been keenly advocating for stability in the region.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said in Beijing that Pakistan and India are important South Asian countries but the "situation in Kashmir has attracted attention of the international community." The Chinese comments aimed at getting involved in Pakistan-India tensions come at a time the armies of India and China are locked in a standoff in Doklam area in the Sikkim section.

Expressing concern over the tension between Pakistan and India Geng said "the conflict occurred near the Line of Control of Kashmir. This will not only harm the peace and stability of the two countries but also peace and tranquility of the region." "We hope the relevant sides can do more things that are conducive for peace and stability in the region and avoiding escalating tensions and China is willing to play constructive role in improving relations between India and Pakistan," he told reporters.

The comments also come two days after a Chinese analyst wrote in the state-run Global Times that a "third country's" Army could enter Kashmir at Pakistan's request, using the "logic" the Indian Army used to stop the Chinese military from constructing the road in Doklam area.

Geng's comments were in reply to a question on the tension between Pakistan and India, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) expressing concern over the situation in Kashmir, and whether China can play role to defuse hostility between the two countries. According to the Foreign Ministry here the OIC Council of Foreign Ministers, who met in Abidjan, Republic of Cote d'Ivoire, passed a resolution on Kashmir.


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