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China says won't force India to accept Belt and Road initiative

30 April 2018

"The decision to initiate a join project in Afghanistan will set off alarms in Pakistan", said a former diplomat who has served in China.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping have agreed to strengthen communications and maintain peace along the two countries' shared border, following the conclusion of a two day "informal" summit held in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, Sunday.

"The Indian side does not exclude this cooperation".

China does not think it is important whether India accepts China's Belt and Road infrastructure project and China won't force it to, Kong told reporters in Wuhan.

China is India's largest trading partner with a total of $84 billion in bilateral trade past year.

The BRI, a pet initiative of President Xi, is aimed at promoting a network of roads, ports and rail networks all over the world to spread China's influence.

Billed as an "informal" summit rather than a more traditional state visit, the meeting has been interpreted as an attempt to reset relations and rebuild trust between the two neighboring powers. "Thumbs up to the two leaders!" "The two sides can handle these issues on the consensus reached", he said. Also, greater attention would be paid to implementing the agreed confidence-building measures, such as following the principle of mutual and equal security and strengthening institutional arrangements and information-sharing mechanisms.

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India was discontented with and anxious about China. While the Indian government promised not to support Tibetan separatism, it has harbored separatists over a long period of time and tacitly approved them engaging in activities that jeopardize China's interests in India. China, in its turn, objects to the fact that the Dalai Lama and other exiles from Tibet have been taken in by India.

"I want to make our countries' friendly relations ceaselessly grow stronger, to make them rush forward without pause like the Yangtze and Yellow Rivers, eternally moving forward", Xi said.

Several web site-related reports have said that both India and China have their respective reasons for forging a broad-based regional approach towards stabilizing Afghanistan.

"They (Modi and Xi) reiterated the importance of building an open, multipolar, pluralist and participatory global economic order which will enable all countries to pursue their development and contribute to the elimination of poverty and inequality in all regions of the world", Gokhale said.

China-India relations have been under considerable strain as the two nations compete for leadership in Asia.

At separate briefings after the summit, neither foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale nor Chinese vice foreign minister Kong Xuanyou mentioned last year's Doklam standoff, but it was clear the two leaders favoured strategic restraint along the 3,488-km border and did not want a repeat of the face-off that sent ties plummeting.

The two leaders have endorsed the work done by the special representatives on the boundary question and the 20 other established mechanisms for addressing issues of contention and convergence.

China says won't force India to accept Belt and Road initiative