China Showing ‘Flexibility’ on Border Talks with India

From the Times of India:

MARSEILLES: Buffeted by the strong Indian reaction to its failed bid to stop the NSG [Nuclear Suppliers Group] waiver for India, China has been showing flexibility on boundary talks. Sources said the Chinese leadership appears to have instructed its negotiators not to get bogged down on the boundary dispute while promoting the strategic partnership between the two countries… During the NSG meeting on September 4-5, the Chinese side actually walked out of the meeting (which they later denied). It took strongly worded demarches by India in Delhi and Beijing as well as a well-timed phone call by Bush to get the Chinese to move…

China has been taking an increasingly hardline position on the boundary dispute resolution with India, virtually going back on the political parameters and guiding principles that were agreed during Wen Jiabao’s visit in 2005. It has increased incursions in and has dismissed the notion that settled populations would be taken into account on the boundary settlement…

In a recent speech, finance minister P Chidambaram said something the government will not express officially but is nevertheless a strong sentiment. Delivering the Cariappa lecture, Chidambaram said, “Across the subcontinent, we face the unarticulated challenge from an equal — and perhaps stronger — rival, namely China. China’s professed goal is the peaceful rising of that country. China has resolved all its boundary disputes with its neighbours, save with India. From time to time, China takes unpredictable positions that raise a number of questions about its attitude towards the rise of India. The most recent example is the negative stance adopted by China in the meeting of the NSG. However, the nagging doubt is whether China will regard India as an equal or as an upstart and what will China’s attitude to India be if India’s economic strength begins to equal that of China.”

India has had nuclear weapons since 1974, but this decision by the NSG allows it to engage in civilian nuclear trade.  More information can be found here.

Information about the China- dispute can be found here.

September 29, 2008, 11:22 AM
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Categories: Main, Politics