New Delhi: China on Tuesday slammed US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and accused him of sowing discord between Beijing and regional countries and undermining the regional peace and stability. China’s remarks came amidst Pompeo’s visit to India for the crucial 2+2 dialogue that aimed at further ramping up overall India-US defence and security ties, and boost strategic cooperation in the Indo-Pacific.Also Read - Rajnath Singh Writes to Bengal, Tamil Nadu CMs Over Exclusion of Tableaux From Republic Day Parade
During a media briefing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin was asked about Pompeo’s visit to India and other South Asian countries during which the top US diplomat’s focus would be on China’s threats. To this, Wang said that Pompeo’s attacks and accusations against China are nothing new, he(Pompeo) has repeated them time and again. Also Read - China Building Illegal Villages in Disputed Bhutan Territory, Less Than 30 KM From Doklam: Report
Wang said, “These are groundless accusations which reflect that he is clinging to the Cold War mentality and ideological biases. We urge him to abandon the Cold War and the zero-sum game mentality and stop sowing discord between China and regional countries as well as undermining the regional peace and stability.” Also Read - China Forcing to Cancel Some Flights, Say US Airlines
Wang made the statements amidst India and the US signing the long-negotiated landmark Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) that will allow sharing of high-end military technology, classified satellite data and critical information between the two countries.
The signing of BECA also signals further boosting of bilateral defence and military ties, and it comes in the backdrop of India’s tense border standoff with China in eastern Ladakh.
Pompeo arrived in India on Monday along with Defence Secretary Mark T Esper for the third edition of the US-India 2+2 dialogue with their counterparts, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.
After his India visit, Pompeo is due to visit Sri Lanka and the Maldives.
(With PTI inputs)