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SCO Summit: Need to respect each other’s ‘core concerns’, PM Modi tells Xi Jinping

Modi told the Chinese President that it would not have been possible for India to become member of SCO without China's backing.

india Updated: Jun 10, 2017 00:40 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi/Beijing
Narendra Modi,Xi Jinping,india
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the SCO Summit in Astana, Kazakhstan on Friday. (PTI Photo)

Amid tensions in Sino-India ties, Prime Minister Narendra Modi stressed the need to respect each other's “core concerns" and appropriately handle the disputes in his meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

In the meeting at Kazakh capital, Astana, on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), Xi said the two countries should also cooperate more and provide assistance to each other in meeting the development goals.

The leaders met for the first time in nearly eight months, and after India boycotted the high-profile Belt and Road Forum (BRF) held in Beiing last month in which 29 world leaders took part.

Modi told the Chinese President that it would not have been possible for India to become member of SCO without China's backing.

“There was an understanding that where we have differences, it is important that the differences should not become dispute,” foreign secretary S Jaishankar told reporters after the meeting.

Relations between India and China has witnessed a downturn owing to differences over a series of issues, including the latter blocking India's move to get Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar banned by the UN, its opposition to India's bid for NSG membership and China's Belt and Road initiative.

Asked whether the NSG, OBOR and Azhar issues were raised, Jaishankar did not give a direct reply and said the meeting was for taking a broad assessment of the relationship. “You should be rest assured that there was a sense that both sides should address their concerns sincerely,” said the foreign secretary.

He said both the countries may have differences but it is important to find "common grounds" and address each other's concerns "with a degree of seriousness". Giving a broad outcome of the meeting, he said India and China are factors of stability when the world is going through economic uncertainty.

Jaishankar said Modi and Xi also deliberated on defence exchanges. Issues relating to trade and investments were a major highlight, he added.

In Beijing, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told a media briefing that both the countries “should also address sensitive and major issues” as she highlighted the issues figured in the meeting.

“India should focus more cooperation and work alongside to provide assistance to each other's developmental goals,” Hua said.

Asserting that China attaches great importance to its ties with India, Xi called for more high-level interaction, Xinhua reported.

First Published: Jun 10, 2017 00:33 IST