WASHINGTON: Hopeful that India and China can negotiate a peaceful resolution to the ongoing Doklam standoff, a senior Trump official has said the US "supports return of status quo" of the tri-junction point.
The US is concerned about "sovereignty issues and adherence to international law" amidst increased tension between the two Asian giants, said a senior administration official.
"We are monitoring the (Doklam) situation very carefully. We are concerned. We hope that the two sides can negotiate a peaceful resolution to the issue. We support return to the status quo," a senior administration official told PTI.
"We're also concerned about Bhutanese sovereignty issues. We're concerned in general terms about sovereignty issues and adherence to international law. I think that certainly pertains to this particular issue," said the official who spoke on condition of anonymity, given the sensitive nature of confrontation between India and China.
Even as China – both its officials and the state-sponsored media -- have increased its rhetoric over the past few months, which at times is seen as entering the domain of threatening; New Delhi, which has taken a mature and strong stand against Beijing, according to experts, is believed has not reached out to Washington on this issue.
However, as a close friend the US has been closely monitoring the situation.
"We hope that India and China can find a negotiated solution to return to a peaceful state of affairs in the area. We are just watching it very carefully and we are in conversation with the Indian government about the issues. We stand ready to help if that is desired. But, for the time being, we're monitoring the situation carefully," the official said.
The senior administration official, in response to a question, however quickly clarified that there has been no such request from India and there is no such intention on the part of the United States as well.
"What kind of help? You said ready to help," the official was asked. Well, you know, I think it's for India and China to decide if that was necessary. I think for the time being the US is monitoring the situation very closely and very carefully," the official said.
"You know, it (the United States) sees it as a bilateral issue between India and China to work through. But certainly, we are interested in seeing peaceful relations prevail in the region. So, if there's anything the US can do to help that situation, we stand ready to assist," he added.