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India Criticises China – Pakistan Joint Statement on PoK

India Criticises China – Pakistan Joint Statement on PoK

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NEW DELHI, June 13: India has strongly criticised a joint China-Pakistan statement on Jammu and Kashmir as “unwarranted references” since the Union Territory including Ladakh are “integral and inalienable” parts of India.

India’s delayed response comes on a joint statement issued by China and Pakistan on June 7 after the Pakistani Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif met Chinese President Xi Jinping in China from June 4 to 8, during which both nations also discussed the so-called China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which passes through India’s sovereign territory in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).

“We have noted unwarranted references to the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir in the joint statement between China and Pakistan of June 7. We categorically reject such references. Our position on the issue is consistent and well known to the concerned parties,” Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal said in a statement on Thursday.

“The Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and the Union Territory of Ladakh have been, are and will always remain integral and inalienable parts of India. No other country has the locus standi to comment on the same,” he said.

Referring to the so-called CPEC, which India does not recognise, Mr Jaiswal said, “The same joint statement also mentions activities and projects under the so-called China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, some of which are in India’s sovereign territory under forcible and illegal occupation by Pakistan. We resolutely oppose and reject any moves by other countries to reinforce or legitimise Pakistan’s illegal occupation of these territories, impinging on India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

India has in the past said many times the $50 billion corridor that seeks to connect Kashgar in western China with Gwadar port in Pakistan, spanning 3,000 km, passes though India’s sovereign territory.

The China-Pakistan joint statement had said the Pakistani side briefed the Chinese side on the latest developments of the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, and the Chinese side reiterated that the Jammu and Kashmir dispute is a leftover from history, and should be properly and peacefully resolved in accordance with the UN Charter, relevant UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreements.

(Manas Dasgupta)


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