Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who addressed the East Asia and ASEAN-India Summits in Indonesia's Jakarta on Thursday, sent a staunch message to China where he advocated for a rules-based post-Covid-19 world order and voiced for joint efforts to strengthen the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries.
"The 21st century is the century of Asia and this is our century. It requires the creation of a rules-based post-Covid world order and everyone’s effort for human welfare," he told the members of the ASEAN-India Summit.
Notably, his statement came more than a week after China enraged New Delhi by incorporating India's integral regions such as Arunachal Pradesh, and Aksai Chin in their latest edition of the map. The so-called standard map released on the website of China’s Ministry of Natural Resources website and the social media platforms of the state news publication, Global Times, included the disputed areas including Arunachal Pradesh, Aksai Chin region, Taiwan and the disputed South China Sea under their territory.
It is worth mentioning China claims Arunachal Pradesh is a part of the Tibet region.
Today’s era is not of war: PM
Speaking at the event, he gave 12-point proposals where he underscored an urgent need to fight terrorism collectively, terror financing and cyber-disinformation. Besides, he also raised issues which have been faced by Global South in multilateral fora. "It is crucial to stick completely to global rules, and everyone’s responsibility and joint measures are also required to maintain the independence and territorial integrity of all nations," PM Modi said.
"As I have said before – today’s era is not of war. Dialogue and diplomacy is the only path to resolution," he added.
"Our history and geography connect India and ASEAN. Along with shared values, regional unity, peace, prosperity, and a shared belief in a multipolar world also binds us together," he said, adding the grouping holds a "prominent place" in India's Indo-Pacific initiative.
China refuses to budge
China's foreign ministry suggested that it would not budge on the issue of the new map and added countries need to view the objectivity of the recently released map. Notably, China claimed it has released the new map in order aware its citizen about their boundaries.
"China’s position on the South China Sea is consistent and clear. The competent authorities of China routinely publish standard maps of various types every year, which aims to make standard maps available to all sectors of society and raise public awareness of the standardised use of maps. We hope parties concerned can view it in an objective and rational light," Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said in response to a question on Thursday when sought his comment on the protests from countries like India, Malaysia as well as the Philippines against this new Chinese map.