China’s envoy rejects threat narrative, focuses on win-win with India

In a bid to reverse the narrative of India-China relations that turned negative after the Ladakh clashed, Chinese Ambassador to India Sun Weidong has rejected any expansionist agenda on part of Beijing and underlined that China is not a threat, but an opportunity for India.
In his first public appearance, albeit through a virtual medium in a webinar, the Chinese envoy mapped the way forward for India-China relations, which will revolve around win-win cooperation and respect for each other’s core concerns and interests.
“China is committed to peaceful development, and it is not a “strategic threat” to India,” said the envoy at the webinar organised by Institute for Chinese Studies. “To safeguard world peace and promote common development has always been the fundamental goal of China’s diplomacy. The Chinese people believe in peace and harmony, and value sincerity and integrity. There’s no gene for seeking hegemony or resorting to military power in Chinese people’s blood,” he said.
The envoy also exhorted India to focus on cooperation, rather than differences. “It is normal for neighbours to have differences. We should focus on friendship and cooperation instead of only on differences,” he said. “We should not allow the development process of the two countries and the overall interests of bilateral relations to be disturbed. As we Chinese often say, “you can’t see the wood for the trees”.
Mr Sun also cautioned India against calls among some sections of Indian strategic community for changing One-China policy.
“There has been an argument in Indian public opinion on the boundary question, which worries me, suggesting the Indian government adjust its policy towards China, and change its stance on issues related to Taiwan, Xizang, Hong Kong and the South China Sea to put pressure on China,” he said.
“I want to point out emphatically that Taiwan, Hong Kong, Xinjiang, and Xizang affairs are totally China’s internal affairs and bear on China’s sovereignty and security. While China doesn’t interfere in other country’s domestic affairs, it allows no external interference and never trades its core interests either.”
Striking an optimistic note on the future of India-China relations, despite ongoing difficulties, the Chinese envoy stressed that “China-India friendship serves the fundamental interests of the two countries.”
“It accords with the aspirations of two peoples and the general trend. It should not be stagnated or even reversed due to temporary difficulties,” he said.
“I personally always have strong confidence in the future of China-India relations. As an old Chinese saying goes, “bite the green mountain like the bamboo and won’t let go no matter from whichever direction the winds leap,”’ he said.

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