New Delhi: Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi has praised India for calling out the West, lauding External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar for a speech he made in Europe earlier this month.
The Chinese minister said that the way Jaishankar “expressed his disapproval of European centralism” and “objected to external forces meddling” in China-India bilateral ties, is a reflection of “India’s tradition of independence”.
At a meeting with India’s new envoy to Beijing Pradeep Kumar Rawat, he said that common interests between China and India far outweigh their differences.
On Wednesday, Rawat paid a courtesy visit to Wang Yi at Beijing’s Diaoyutai State Guest House. This was his first in-person meeting with the Chinese minister since taking over as India’s new ambassador.
“The two sides (India and China) should work together to cope with various global challenges, and safeguard the common interests of China, India and the vast developing countries. Recently, External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar publicly expressed his disapproval of European centralism and objections to external forces meddling in China-India relations. That reflects India’s tradition of independence,” said a statement issued by the Chinese Foreign Ministry.
At the GlobSec 2022 Bratislava Forum, Jaishankar had said that New Delhi and Beijing can manage their bilateral relationship on their own, even as he stressed on the need for the world to come out of its Eurocentric mindset.
Coming down heavily on Europe, he had said that India does not make foreign policy choices that are “cynical or transactional” in nature while alluding to India’s stand on the Russia-Ukraine war in the context of its relationship with China.
During the meeting, Wang Yi also said “the two sides should work in the same direction to maintain the warming momentum in China-India relations, and bring them back to the track of stable and sound development at an early date”.
The meeting took place even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi virtually met Chinese President Xi Jinping for the three-day BRICS Summit that began Wednesday. Both leaders addressed the BRICS Business Forum Wednesday.
Wang Yi put forward “four-pronged perseverance” on China-India relations during his meeting with Rawat — persevere in the important strategic consensus reached between leaders of both countries, persevere in putting the boundary issue in an appropriate place in bilateral relations, persevere in continuously injecting positive energy into bilateral relations, and continuously expanding mutually beneficial cooperation.
India stressed on peace and tranquility in border
During the interaction, Rawat said that New Delhi is interested in “realising the full potential” of the bilateral ties between India and China.
“Bilateral and multilateral issues of interest to both sides were touched upon during the conversation. State Councilor Wang Yi conveyed that at the highest level of leadership of the two countries, there is consensus on the importance of bilateral relations for Asia and the world,” said the statement issued by the Indian Embassy in Beijing.
“Ambassador agreed and emphasised the criticality of maintenance of peace and tranquility in the border areas for realising the full potential of this consensus. Wang Yi said that the border issue is important and we should stay committed to peacefully addressing it through consultation and coordination,” the statement further said.
(Edited by Gitanjali Das)