Singh-Wen meeting an opportunity to address issues: India | india | Hindustan Times
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Singh-Wen meeting an opportunity to address issues: India

India on Friday said the meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao in Thailand tomorrow will provide an opportunity for addressing outstanding issues like the border row between the two neighbours whose relations are "complex".

india Updated: Oct 23, 2009 20:50 IST

India on Friday said the meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao in Thailand on Saturday will provide an opportunity for addressing outstanding issues like the border row between the two neighbours whose relations are "complex".

The two leaders are also expected to discuss other aspects of bilateral relations which have been developing in recent years.

"Bilateral relationship will be in focus," Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao told reporters here on the eve of the meeting between Singh and Wen in the backdrop of recent sparring over Arunachal Pradesh and some other issues.

Rao, who was India's Ambassador to China before being appointed Foreign Secretary in July, said the relationship between the two countries is a "complex one" though it has "developed in many areas" in recent years.

"You are aware of the outstanding issues that remain to be resolved between India and China and obviously in meetings of this nature, especially meetings between leadership at the highest level, there is an opportunity to address all these issues," she said referring to the Singh-Wen meeting.

The Foreign Secretary said India and China are partners in international context when it comes to many multilateral issues of concern to the developing world.

"These issues also form a part of discussions when such meetings take place," she said.

To a question on the Dalai Lama's proposed visit to Arunachal Pradesh which has been objected to by China, Rao said India considers him a "responsible spiritual" leader who is free to travel anywhere in this country.

However, the Tibetan community in India will not engage in any political activity, she said.

Rao expressed ignorance when asked whether there was a rethink on the Dalai Lama's part on visiting Arunachal.

"We are aware of the fact that Dalai Lama had expressed an intention to visit Arunachal Pradesh but I have no further details at the moment," she said.

Asked whether the Dalai Lama would need inner line permit for travel to Arunachal, Rao said "I don't believe he needs one" as she underlined that Arunachal is an integral part of India.

Describing the inner line permit issue as "a technicality", she said the poser should better be addressed to the Home Ministry.