The common interests of China and India “far outweigh” the differences between the two countries, Beijing’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi said at a meeting with the Indian ambassador on Thursday, the Hindustan Times reported.
India’s envoy in Beijing Pradeep Kumar Rawat met Wang ahead of the 14th BRICS summit, which is being hosted virtually by China. The BRICS is a grouping of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
“China and India’s common interests far outweigh their differences,” Wang said at the meeting, according to a statement released by Beijing. “The two sides should support rather than undermine each other, strengthen cooperation rather than guard against each other, and enhance mutual trust rather than be suspicious of each other.”
Relations between India and China are at their worst in decades since troops of the two countries clashed in eastern Ladakh along the Line of Actual Control on June 15, 2020. Twenty Indian soldiers were killed in the hand-to-hand combat. While Beijing had acknowledged casualties early, it did not disclose details till February, when it said four of its soldiers had died.
Despite many rounds of military and diplomatic-level talks, the troops continue to be deployed in several parts along the eastern sector of the Line of Actual Control.
Chalking out a “four-pronged perseverance” on Indo-China relations, Wang said that the two nations should follow the “important strategic consensus” reached by the top leadership. He added that China and India should not pose threats to each other, but act as partners.
Meanwhile, in a statement released by New Delhi, the external affairs ministry said that the Indian ambassador stressed on the “criticality of maintenance of peace and tranquility in the border areas” to realise the full potential of consensus on bilateral relations between the two countries.
‘Bloc confrontation must be avoided,’ says Xi with Modi in audience
While chairing the BRICS summit on Wednesday, Chinese President Xi Jinping called for abandoning “cold war mentality” and “bloc confrontation” at a global level, The Indian Express reported.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin were listening to the virtual address when Xi made the comment.
The Chinese president added that it was crucial to “oppose unilateral sanctions and the abuse of sanctions”.
“...It is important for the world to recognise that forging a community with a shared future, like a big family, is so much better than building exclusive circles,” he said. The comments were apparently a reference to India being part of the Quad alliance, according to The Indian Express.
The Quad is a four-nation grouping of India, the United States, Australia and Japan. The grouping is seen as an alliance to counter China’s dominance in the Indo-Pacific region.
Meanwhile, in his address at the summit, Modi laid importance to the governance of global economy in the post-coronavirus scenario.
“Even though the scale of the epidemic has reduced globally...Many of its ill effects are still visible in the global economy,” he said. “We, the BRICS member countries, have had a very similar view of the governance of the global economy. And so our mutual cooperation can make a useful contribution to post-Covid global recovery.”