New Delhi: India has called China’s latest attempt to raise the Kashmir issue at the United Nations (UN) a failed bid as other permanent members saw it as a “distraction” and refused to discuss it.
“We are glad that the effort was viewed as a distraction and it was pointed by many friends that bilateral mechanisms are available to raise and address issues that Pakistan may have in its ties with India,” Syed Akbaruddin, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN, told ThePrint.
On Wednesday, China, a P-5 member of the UN Security Council (UNSC), attempted to informally discuss Kashmir under the ‘any other business’ category.
However, the four other permanent UNSC members — France, US, UK and Russia — refused to discuss it. All of them reiterated that Pakistan should take up issues related to Kashmir bilaterally with India, official sources said.
France has been particularly supportive of India on this issue.
China took this step for the third time at the behest of its all-weather friend Pakistan. Beijing could discuss the matter only in the first attempt in August last year. But even then all members called for a bilateral dialogue.
Zhang Jun, Chinese permanent representative to the UN, told reporters after the latest meet that China took up the matter since Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi wrote to the UN seeking a discussion on the situation in Kashmir.
‘Pay heed to clear signals’
Speaking to ThePrint over China’s latest move, Akbaruddin said, “The outcome of the consultations is on expected lines… Pakistan’s practice of using false pretenses to distract from addressing the malaise that afflicts it has run its course.”
He added, “We hope that Pakistan pays heed to the clear signals sent out today (Wednesday) and focuses on the hard tasks it has to address to ensure normal relations with India.”
In December, China had made a second attempt to discuss the issues of Kashmir and scrapping of Article 370 in closed-door consultations — considered informal as the proceedings are not recorded and no public statements are given. The move didn’t materialise.
“We are happy that neither the alarmist scenario painted by the representatives of Pakistan, nor any of the baseless allegations made repeatedly by representatives of Pakistan in UN fora were found to be credible today,” Akbaruddin added.
A dialogue between India and Pakistan might finally resume with New Delhi extending an invitation to Islamabad for Prime Minister Imran Khan to attend the upcoming Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit, according to sources.
India will host the China-dominated grouping’s summit this year.