India’s campaign in China for meaningful anti-terrorism cooperation and support for a permanent seat at the UN Security Council began in Beijing on Tuesday.
External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna linked terrorism to economic growth and regional stability and sought China’s backing on India’s proposal for a UN convention against terrorism.
India’s prospects for 8-10 per cent annual economic growth could be “thwarted, disturbed or halted if terrorists continue to have their way”, he said.
“For both of us, stability at home stands in sharp contrast to extreme instability in our shared neighbourhood,” he said in a speech at an official think-tank. “It’s critical for our future that we cooperate in meeting common challenges.’’
Krishna made the comments a day before he meets Premier Wen Jiabao and foreign minister Yang Jiechi for talks on the border dispute, China’s policy of issuing separate stapled visas to Kashmir residents, trade barriers and imbalances.
“India has come out with a proposal for a comprehensive legislation or convention in the UN to face terrorism as a universal threat,’’ he said. “Every country should cooperate with each other in order to thwart the evil designs of terror....’’
In an indirect reference to Pakistan, the minister said that a few nations believe they can destabilise a country through terrorism. “We have to guard against terrorism from within and imported from the outside,’’ he said, and referred to the recent terror attack in Pune.
“We understand the desire of India to play a larger role on the international stage,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Jiang Yu told the media. “We would like to join hands with relevant parties, including India, on reform of the UN (and) hope that relevant parties can discuss in a patient and democratic way to reach a consensus.”
Krishna also sought China’s support on India’s candidature for a permanent seat at the UN Security Council. “Indeed, even on the complex issue of UN reform, it is perhaps time for China to review previously held positions and welcome the presence in the security council of a nation with which it has much in common,” he said.
India and China have made “considerable progress” on the boundary question, Krishna said. “It is going to be a time consuming affair and one has to be patient to deal with it. The special representatives are aware of their responsibilities and we hope a mutually acceptable solution can be arrived at.”
National security adviser Shiv Shankar Menon will be part of the next round of boundary talks with senior state councillor Dai Bingguo.
(With PTI inputs)