NEW DELHI: Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar is in Beijing with a message for the neighbour in the East to respect its sovereignty concerns with respect to the Pakistan-Occupied-Kashmir and implement its ‘principled’ stand on terror.
The Foreign Secretary is travelling to Beijing to co-chair the bilateral Strategic Dialogue that will also see discussion on “friction points” – namely China blocking India’s entry to the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and vetoing designation of Masood Azhar as a terrorist.
"For us, there are questions of sovereignty which need to be addressed first," said Jaishankar has told the state-owned the Global Times. The Chinese newspaper has stressed on the fact that as over 20 world leaders will be congregating to discuss China’s One Belt and One Road initiative, India will be keeping away from it. India’s objection to the multi-billion dollar project has been that it transverses through PoK.
India, despite repeated engagements with China, has failed to impress it on the need of putting Masood Azhar under the UN Security Council’s proscribed terrorist list. "China has a very strong, principled position on counter-terrorism. We hope the position China already has will be further implemented," Jaishankar added. The China-India Strategic Dialogue will be starting on Wednesday in Beijing.
Off late, New Delhi has chosen to deploy a masculine policy when it comes to its neighbour in the West and the East. While Prime Minister Narendra Modi responded to Pakistan inciting unrest in Kashmir by bringing up the issue of Balochistan, the Indian establishment has been not so subtly using Tibetan spiritual guru Dalai Lama and Taiwan to needle China.
Before, Jaishankar headed to Beijing, India had played host to Taiwanese legislators and shrugged when China objected to it. It remains to be seen if the strategic shift in Indian foreign policy towards China will help it in achieving the requisite objective.