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FM calls for right path of mutual trust, cooperation between China, India

Updated: February 26, 2021 08:56    Xinhua

BEIJING — China and India should firmly follow the right path of mutual trust and cooperation between neighboring major countries, and not go astray with suspicion and distrust nor fall back on a road of negative retrogression, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Feb 25.

Wang made the remarks in a telephone conversation with Indian External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, stressing that the two sides should maintain the strategic consensuses reached by their leaders.

During the phone call, he noted that the two countries need to properly handle the border issue, so as to prevent the bilateral ties from trapping into a vicious cycle because of it.

Border disputes are an objective reality and need to be attached adequate attention and taken seriously. However, the border issue is not the whole story of China-India relations, and should be placed in a proper position in their relationship.

China and India should also adhere to the general direction that the two major emerging economies work together to achieve development, and create more conditions to further improve bilateral ties and promote pragmatic cooperation, Wang added.

Wang said that the rights and wrongs of last year's situation in China-India border areas are very clear, and profound lessons should be drawn from the past.

Recently, India has vacillated and even moved backward over its policy on China, which has affected and disrupted bilateral pragmatic cooperation, Wang said, noting that it goes against the interests of both sides.

Experience over the past few decades has repeatedly demonstrated that acts of highlighting differences will not help resolve the issue, but erode the foundation of mutual trust, he added.

Wang said that China and India have recently completed disengagement of frontline troops in the Pangong Tso Lake area, with the situation on the ground significantly eased.

The two sides must cherish the hard-won progress, jointly consolidate the achievements and maintain the momentum of consultation, so as to further ease the situation, he said.

Both sides should also improve the border control mechanism, advance the boundary negotiation process and continuously accumulate mutual trust to achieve peace and tranquility in the border areas, Wang said.

China and India, both ancient civilizations and major emerging economies at a critical historical stage of development and revitalization, should help and support each other in achieving their goals, Wang said.

He cautioned that a continuing decline of bilateral relations would bring about unnecessary consumption and loss to both sides.

Wang suggested both sides work together instead of blocking each other, and join hands for development instead of building up walls, saying that the two countries can take an easy-to-difficult, step-by-step approach to improving ties.

Jaishankar, for his part, said that the recent disengagement of both troops in the Pangong Tso Lake area is an important outcome of the two sides' earnest implementation of the consensus reached by the two foreign ministers in Moscow.

India hopes to strengthen dialogues and consultations with China, complete disengagement of troops in other regions as soon as possible, push for the de-escalation of the border tensions and keep peace and tranquility in the border areas, he said.

India would act in a view of the long-term development and the panorama of relations with China, implement the important consensus reached by the leaders of the two countries and get the bilateral ties back on the right track at an early date, Jaishankar added.

The two sides agreed to establish a hotline to exchange views timely.