Ahead of his state visit to China, President Pranab Mukherjee said on Friday India seeks a “fair, reasonable” and mutually acceptable settlement of boundary question which will help in achieving full potential of Sino-India relationship.
Talking to state-run Chinese Central Television (CCTV) and Xinuha news agencies ahead of his first state visit beginning May 24, the President spoke on various issues including India’s concerns on terrorism, bilateral trade and cultural and educational exchanges.
In reply to a question about some “sensitive problems” left over from history between India and China, Mukherjee said India would like to expand and diversify its engagement with China across various fields while “proactively addressing outstanding issues” including the boundary question.
“We seek a fair, reasonable and mutually acceptable settlement of the boundary question and, pending the boundary settlement, to maintain peace and tranquility in the border areas.
“Both sides should strive to ensure that the outstanding issues are addressed in a manner that demonstrates mutual sensitivity to each other’s concerns, interests and aspiration,” he said and added that it was only in this manner can “we ensure that these differences will not come in the way of continued development of bilateral relations.”
The President also favoured increasing mutual trust and understanding through stepped-up dialogue on political, security and strategic issues.
“We should expand our defence exchanges and increase economic engagement, especially through greater investments,” he said and also suggested “functional cooperation at international fora”.
In reply to another question on his state visit, the President said, “We are doing well but the full potentiality is yet to be achieved. That is why we want to resolve all outstanding issues in a mutually acceptable manner, keeping in mind the aspirations, concerns, sensitivities of each country.”