Strategic talks with India held in friendly atmosphere, says China | world-news | Hindustan Times
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Strategic talks with India held in friendly atmosphere, says China

Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said the dialogue reached the goals as expected and is of positive significance for bilateral relations. 

world Updated: Feb 23, 2017 22:19 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis
Chinese experts said that “mistrust” between India and China will not allow the differences between the two countries to be settled easily. 
Chinese experts said that “mistrust” between India and China will not allow the differences between the two countries to be settled easily. (PTI)

China on Thursday played down the differences that marked the strategic dialogue with India and insisted the talks were held in an “overall friendly” atmosphere.

Foreign secretary S Jaishankar on Wednesday concluded his two-day Beijing visit with a marathon strategic talk with executive vice-foreign minister Zhang Yesui. Earlier, he met foreign minister, Wang Yi and China’s top diplomat, state councilor, Yang Jiechi. 

Speaking to the Indian media after the meetings, Jaishankar said it was made clear to the Chinese officials that overwhelming evidence – and support – had been gathered against Pakistan-based terrorist Masood Azhar, for proscribing him in the United Nations. 

Chinese experts said that “mistrust” between India and China will not allow the differences between the two countries to be settled easily. 

However, foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said: “The dialogue reached the goals as expected and is of positive significance for bilateral relations.” 

“Both sides agreed to maintain the momentum of bilateral relations in the spirit of agreement of two leaders, work out a good programme for 2017 at various levels, advance practical cooperation, strengthen coordination and cooperation on regional and international issues,” he said when asked to comment about the meeting on Thursday,. 

“In friendly atmosphere, the two sides had an in-depth and comprehensive exchange of views on bilateral relations, international situation and other issues of mutual interest. The two sides reached extensive consensus and shared the view that with similar national conditions, stage of development, China and India have extensive converging interests and huge potential for cooperation,” Geng said. 

“The overall impression is, this dialogue was held in a friendly atmosphere. The two sides had an in-depth and comprehensive exchange of views and reached extensive agreement,” he said. 

Geng’s comments came hours after India dismissed China’s contention that it has not furnished enough evidence against Azhar, with Jaishankar telling senior Chinese officials that the burden of proof is not on New Delhi.

China’s efforts to block moves to sanction Azhar at the UN, despite its “principled” stand on counter-terrorism, was a political decision, he said on Wednesday.

Jaishankar also reiterated India’s concerns on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) that passes through PoK, making it clear that it was a “sovereignty” issue and the reason why New Delhi will not be part of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), a massive inter-continental connectivity project floated by President Xi Jinping.

On the Azhar issue, Jaishankar made it clear to Chinese officials that the burden of proof is not on India.

The international community is convinced of Azhar’s culpability and it was the US, UK and France which had moved the latest proposal at the UN Security Council to get the Jaish-e-Mohammad chief proscribed, he added.