President Mukherjee to visit China next month


Continuing high-level engagement with Beijing after meeting between two Foreign Ministers and trips by Defence Minister and National Security Advisor, India’s President Pranab Mukherjee will visit China in May. The China visit comes amid India’s growing ties with the US that would get further push with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s expected visit to the US in June.

Some of the latest developments such as China’s stand on Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar and India’s decision to permit World Uyghur Conference members to meet the Dalai Lama have once again brought differences between the two countries. India’s Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and NSA Ajit Doval raised the issue of Mr Azhar during their respective visits to China.

Experts view Mr Mukherjee’s China visit as a balancing act after the strengthening of India-US relations in recent times. India and China have held several high level meetings in recent times with an aim to improve bilateral relationship between both the countries. However, bitterness continues to exist between both the countries on certain sensitive issues.

The recent visit by US Defence Secretary Ashton Carter to India was closely monitored by China. There has been a growing unease in China on India’s proximity to the US. China’s state run newspaper ‘The Global Times’ had referred to India as a “beautiful woman wooed by all men, notably the two strongest in the house, US and China.”

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