India takes strong exception to reference of J-K in Pak-China joint statement


External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar (PTI photo)

External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar (PTI photo)

India on Tuesday objected to the reference made to Jammu and Kashmir in a China-Pakistan joint statement issued after Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s visit to Islamabad.

External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar also talked about the China-Pakistan economic corridor in Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir, asserting that India is “resolutely opposed” to any actions by other countries to change the status quo in the region.

“We reject the reference to Jammu and Kashmir in the joint statement issued by China and Pakistan after the recent visit of the Chinese foreign minister. Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India,” he said, responding to a question on the issue.

“On the other hand, India has consistently expressed concerns to both China and Pakistan on the projects in so-called ‘China-Pakistan Economic Corridor’, which is in the territory of India that has been illegally occupied by Pakistan since 1947,” he said.

Kumar said the parties concerned should cease such actions.

Pakistan and China on Sunday discussed the Kashmir issue during Wang’s visit to Islamabad as the two countries underlined the need to settle disputes in the region through dialogue on the basis of mutual respect and equality.

Wang’s visit took place amid fresh Indo-Pak tensions after New Delhi revoked Jammu and Kashmir’s special status on August 5.

A joint press release issued at the conclusion of the Chinese Foreign Minister’s two-day visit to Pakistan on Sunday said the Pakistani side briefed the Chinese side on the situation in Kashmir, including its concerns, position, and “urgent humanitarian issues”.

“The Chinese side responded that it was paying close attention to the current situation in Jammu and Kashmir and reiterated that the Kashmir issue is a dispute left from history, and should be properly and peacefully resolved based on the UN Charter, relevant UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreements,” according to the statement.

It said China is opposed to any “unilateral actions that complicate the situation”.

Last month, India abrogated provisions of the Article 370 of the Constitution to withdraw the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, and bifurcated the state into two union territories.

Pakistan reacted to the move strongly and even downgraded its diplomatic ties with India.

India has categorically told the international community that the scrapping of Article 370 was an internal matter of the country and also advised Pakistan to accept the reality.

The multi-billion dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor passed through PoK over which India has been lodging strong protests.

India has been maintaining that the CPEC encroaches on its sovereignty and territorial integrity.