Days after Chinese President Xi Jinping met Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Shanghai Cooperation Summit (SCO) in Qingdao and accepted his invitation to visit India for an informal meeting in 2019, China on Monday, in a friendly gesture, proposed a trilateral summit to settle boundary disputes between India and Pakistan.
"Some Indian friends suggested that India, China, and Pakistan may have some kind of trilateral summit on the sidelines of the SCO. So, if China, Russia, and Mongolia can have a trilateral summit, then why not India, China, and Pakistan," Chinese Ambassador to India Luo Zhaohui said.
Speaking at a seminar, titled "Beyond Wuhan: How Far and Fast Can China-India Relations Go" in New Delhi, Zhaohui appealed for a joint effort to maintain peace along the border, and said, "We cannot stand another Doka La incident."
"We need to control, manage, narrow differences through expanding cooperation. The boundary question was left over by history. We need to find a mutual acceptable solution through Special Representatives' Meeting while adopting confidence building measures," he said.
Praising PM Modi's remarks at the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, Luo Zhaohui said that Modi's speech has already sent a positive message to China. Also praising the recently concluded SCO summit at Qingdao, he said; "strategic communications, meetings and heart-to-heart dialogues are important. What’s equally important is to implement the consensus, transmit (the) leaders' personal friendship down to the people, and take more concrete actions. The Qingdao meeting has shown the right direction."
Zhaohui also said that India and China are neighbors that "cannot be moved away". "We are most populous and largest developing countries. We shared a historic glory of friendly interactions. We also have pending boundary issues. Our relations so multifaceted and complicated, calling for special care and attention," he said.
"China-India relations have gone beyond bilateral scope. We have broad converging interests and face common challenges in Asia and beyond. We need to enhance coordination and cooperation in SCO, BRICS, and G20, and join hands to tackle global challenges," he said.
The Chinese Ambassador to India also asserted that India and China have to follow five Cs to improve relations — communication, cooperation, contacts, coordination, and control. He tweeted:"We need to control, manage & narrow differences through expanding cooperation. The boundary question was left over by history. We need to find a mutual acceptable solution through Special Representatives' Meeting while adopting confidence building measures."
We need to control, manage & narrow differences through expanding cooperation. The boundary question was left over by history. We need to find a mutual acceptable solution through Special Representatives' Meeting while adopting confidence building measures. pic.twitter.com/v9cXwpAPHx— Luo Zhaohui (@China_Amb_India) June 18, 2018
The Chinese envoy's remarks come a year after the troops of India and China were locked in the 73-day standoff in Doka La. On 16 June 2017, the Indian side stopped the construction of a road by the Chinese Army in the disputed area. The face-off later ended on 28 August. Since then, both sides have been taking efforts to reset ties, leaving behind the episode.
Modi attended the SCO summit nearly six weeks after a "milestone" summit with Xi in Wuhan. The duo held detailed discussions ahead of the SCO summit in Qingdao. They covered key aspects of the bilateral engagement, and made attempts to fix ties hit by issues like the Doka La standoff, and China blocking India's move to get Pakistan-based JeM chief Masood Azhar banned by the United Nations, and its opposition to India's bid for the Nuclear Suppliers Group membership.
The SCO is an Eurasian inter-governmental organisation, the creation of which was announced in 2001 in Shanghai by Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. It was preceded by the Shanghai Five mechanism.
India and Pakistan were granted full membership of the bloc in June last year.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart attended the annual SCO Summit in Qingdao, China, this month as full members for the first time.