New Delhi, June 25: Ahead of the much-awaited meeting between US President Donald Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, China raised apprehensions over the growing Indo-US partnership in the Pacific belt. Training its guns at Washington and New Delhi, Chinese Foreign Ministry warned both the nations to not to “disturb peace and stability in South China Sea”. Also Read - Kohinoor Remains Elusive But Centuries-Old Goddess Annapurna Statue To Come Back To India
Beijing has reiterated its appeal before New Delhi, objecting against the partnership with US and its ally Japan, for pursuing joint interests in the South China Sea. “With concerted efforts of China and ASEAN countries the situation there is cooling down. We hope other countries especially non-regional countries can respect the efforts by the regional countries to maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea and can play a constructive role in this regard,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang. Also Read - When Coronavirus Vaccine Comes, These People Will be Inoculated First | Check Full List
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– India’s efforts to tie-up with non-China nations for oil-exploration initiatives in the South China Sea over past three years has irked Beijing, with the latter using diplomatic channels to warn India against its growing activities in the region.
– Earlier, US Press Secretary Sean Spicer said cooperation between India and the US on Indo-Pacific region which includes the South China Sea will figure in the talks between Modi and Trump to be held on Monday.
– China is locked in a dispute with the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, Vietnam and Taiwan over the ownership of energy-rich waters. China claims almost 90 per cent of the sea. The US has sent its warships into the waters, asserting its freedom to navigate in the international waters. The act was considered as a violation of its sovereignty by China, warning the Trump administration of “extremely dangerous consequences” if such provocations are repeated in future.
– Apart from the Indo-US interest in Pacific region, the apprehensions shown by Beijing also come in the backdrop of US approving the sale of 22 Guardian Drones to India.
– By clearing the sale of the surveillance drone weapons to India, the US State Department operationalised the status of “major defence partner” accorded to New Delhi by the Barack Obama administration last year.
– India becomes the first non-NATO nation to buy Guardian drones. The deal holds significance for New Delhi as Beijing has rejuvenated its interests in India’s maritime border with Pakistan.
– With US growing ties with India, China suffers a setback in its attempt to isolate India by strengthening ties with New Delhi’s neighbouring rival Pakistan.