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Home » International » Cause for concern when neighbours don’t observe written agreements, says EAM Jaishankar on China

Cause for concern when neighbours don’t observe written agreements, says EAM Jaishankar on China

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Tokyo, March 7

Noting the reality of power shifts in the Indo-Pacific, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Thursday referred to China and said that it is a cause for concern when a country does not observe written agreements with a neighbour.

Participating in the first Raisina Roundtable in Tokyo, Jaishankar said there are political and strategic consequences of “very big shifts” in capabilities, influence, and ambitions of nations in the Indo-Pacific and one has to “deal with that reality”.

Illustrating New Delhi’s own situation vis-a-vis China, he said for nearly 45 years, there was no bloodshed on the India-China border but things changed in 2020.

And today… we can disagree on many things, but when a country, sort of, does not observe written agreements with a neighbour, then I think you have cause for concern, because it then raises a question mark about the stability of the relationship, and frankly, about intentions,” EAM Jaishankar said in response to a question.

He acknowledged that with shifting global dynamics, India’s balance with other countries is changing as well and the challenge lies in creating “new equilibriums in a less frictional manner”.

At a recent interactive session at a think-tank in New Delhi, Jaishankar said the government is focused on strengthening the border infrastructure and that there has to be an “equilibrium” in Sino-India relations.

The minister also stressed on China adhering to border management pacts and maintaining peace along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) to ensure smooth ties.

The minister’s remarks came weeks after the 21st round of the India-China Corps Commander Level Meeting, seeking complete disengagement in the remaining areas along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh as an essential basis for the restoration of peace and tranquillity in the border areas.

The two sides agreed to maintain communication through relevant military and diplomatic mechanisms and also committed to peace and tranquility on the ground in the border areas, according to a Ministry of External Affairs release.

A border standoff erupted between the two Asian giants on May 5, 2020, after a violent clash in the Pangong lake area with relations reaching a low point.

The two sides completed the disengagement process from several areas in 2021 after extensive diplomatic and military talks.

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