China on Wednesday reiterated its principled stance over the Kashmir issue and stressed that any unilateral change in the status quo by India in the Illegally Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) was illegal and invalid.
“Our position is consistent and clear. This issue is a dispute left over from history between Pakistan and India that is an objective fact established by the United Nations Charter, United Nations Security Council’s resolutions and bilateral agreement between Pakistan and India,” Chinese Foreign Ministry’s Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said during his regular briefing while reacting to one year completion of India’s unilateral actions to change the demography of IIOJK.
China says any unilateral change by India to Kashmir will be invalid and illegal
He said any unilateral change to the status quo (in IIOJK) was illegal and invalid, emphasising that the issue should be properly resolved peacefully through dialogue and consultation between the parties concerned.
On the continuing massive atrocities on innocent Kashmiris at the hands of Indian troops deployed in the held territory with India’s escalating ceasefire violations along with rhetoric against Pakistan which posed a serious threat to regional and international peace and security, the spokesperson said, “China follows closely the situation in the Kashmir region.”
Wang Wenbin remarked that Pakistan and India were neighbours that could not be moved away. “Peaceful coexistence serves the fundamental interest of both and the common aspiration of the international community.”
“The Chinese side hopes that the two nations could properly handle differences through dialogue, improves relations and jointly safeguard peace, stability, and development of both countries and the wider region,” he added.
China subtly supports Pakistan’s new political map
To a query about the issuance of a new map by Pakistan showing a part of Kashmir as disputed territory, the spokesperson said he had already stated China’s position on the Kashmir issue and he would not repeat it.
China has been a staunch supporter of Pakistan on the Kashmir issue. In the joint statement issued after the visit of President Dr Arif Alvi to China this March, the Kashmir issue was also raised during the visit and China underscored that it was paying close attention to the current situation and reiterated that the Kashmir issue was a dispute left from history, and should be properly and peacefully resolved based on the UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreement. China also opposed any unilateral actions that complicate the situation.
In July, the foreign ministers of Pakistan and China agreed to jointly defend regional stability. Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi spoke with Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on phone and discussed a wide range of issues, including regional situation and the Kashmir issue.
Wang Yi said China and Pakistan should work together to jointly tackle challenges and defend common interests and regional peace and stability.
India furious over China statement on Kashmir
India hit out on China on Wednesday for saying that “unilateral” changes made to the status of the former state of Jammu and Kashmir in 2019 were “illegal and invalid,” saying Beijing has no legal standing on the issue.
“The Chinese side has no locus standi whatsoever on this matter and is advised not to comment on the internal affairs of other nations,” said Anurag Srivastava, spokesperson for India’s External Affairs Ministry.
Marking one year since India scrapped the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and its bifurcation into two union territories, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin had said: “Any unilateral change to the status quo is illegal and invalid. This issue should be properly resolved peacefully through dialogue and consultation between the parties concerned.”
Flash: Strong statement by India on China trying to raise Kashmir at UNSC. MEA says, "firmly reject China’s interference in our internal affairs and urge it to draw proper conclusions from such infructuous attempts" pic.twitter.com/nT6Nt8yQnu
— Sidhant Sibal (@sidhant) August 6, 2020
On Aug. 5 last year, the Indian government scrapped the autonomy of the country’s only Muslim-majority state. Jammu and Kashmir was also split into two federally administered territories.
Simultaneously, New Delhi locked the region down, detaining thousands of people, including dozens of top politicians, imposing restrictions on movement and enforcing a communications blackout.
GVS News Desk with additional input by other sources