|Wang Yi Meets with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj of India|
On December 11, 2017 local time, Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj of India on the sidelines of his attendance at the 15th Meeting of Foreign Ministers of China, Russia and India in New Delhi.
Wang Yi said that in 2017, China-India relations have maintained an overall development momentum. Both sides made efforts to this end but the results were unsatisfactory. The Dong Lang incident caused by the Indian border troops' illegal crossing of the China-India boundary into the Chinese territory was a severe test for bilateral relations. The incident was ultimately settled by peaceful means through diplomatic measures, which embodies that China-India relations are becoming increasingly mature. However, lessons should be learned to prevent similar incidents from happening again.
As two great ancient civilizations and emerging market economies, China and India both shoulder the historical mission of development and rejuvenation. Sharing the same or similar views on the world trends and international affairs, the two countries should become natural partners for cooperation. Leaders of both countries once pointed out that China and India should see each other as an opportunity rather than challenge, and a partner rather than opponent. Both sides should earnestly implement these important judgments to reach more extensive consensus and turn them into more specific measures. Both sides should constantly expand the positive side of bilateral relations and further accumulate the positive energy of bilateral exchanges.
Wang Yi expressed that China-India relations are at a critical period. The most important thing between both countries remains to be the genuine cultivation of mutual trust. With the presence of mutual trust, specific issues can be hopefully solved on the basis of mutual understanding and mutual accommodation; while with the absence of mutual trust, some individual issues will keep fermenting and spilling over, thus eroding the overall situation of bilateral relations. Therefore, both sides should enhance strategic communication at all levels, restore the established dialogue mechanisms, deepen practical cooperation in various fields, and meanwhile, well manage the existing differences and well safeguard peace and tranquility in the border areas. “If China and India speak in one voice, the world will listen.” It is hoped that this day would come soon.
Sushma Swaraj expressed that India has always attached high importance to its relations with China and regarded India-China relations as an important part of the country’s foreign policy. Since India and China are two major developing countries, the significance of relations between the two countries transcends bilateral scope. Bilateral relations have important influence on the region and the world at large. Against the current backdrop of the complicated and ever-changing world situation, India-China relations have maintained overall stable development though confronted by some challenges. The settlement of the Dong Lang incident through diplomatic measures fully embodies the two countries’ political wisdom. The Indian side has always believed that India and China share far more similarities than differences. Both countries should strengthen strategic communication, enhance strategic mutual trust, prevent differences from evolving into disputes and avoid disputes deteriorating into conflicts. The Indian side stands ready to work with China to restore various bilateral institutional arrangements, push forward cooperation in various fields, and meanwhile, well manage differences, so as to jointly safeguard peace and tranquility in the border areas. Only when India and China work hand in hand can the Asian century truly arrives.