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China calls on India to respond positively to request of UNSC members on Kashmir issue

BEIJING (Monitoring Desk): After a recently-held United Nations Security Council (UNSC) meeting to review the situation in India-occupied Jammu and Kashmir, China has called on India to “give serious consideration and positive response to the request of UNSC members” on the issue.

The remarks were made on Friday during a press conference by the Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson, Geng Shuang.

Shuang was asked what China’s position on the situation in the occupied valley is, especially, in the backdrop of reports that many of the UNSC members had viewed the forum as an inappropriate place to take up the issue.

According to the officially released comments, the Chinese foreign minister said that at Pakistan’s request, the UNSC members heard a briefing by the UN secretariat on the issue on January 15. He rubbished claims that the issue did not get much support from members of the UNSC.

“Members of the Security Council are concerned about the current situation in Kashmir, and call for observance of the UN Charter and international law, and peaceful resolution of disputes through political dialogue. They believe relevant parties should remain restrained and deescalate the tension,” said Shuang.

“I shall stress that the India and Pakistan issue has all along been on the agenda of the UNSC, and the Security Council should continue to pay attention to Kashmir in light of new developments,” he added.

The Chinese foreign minister said that the UNSC review will aid in easing the situation in the region “and properly resolve the issue”.

He expressed China’s resolve to continue to play “a constructive role in upholding regional peace and stability”.

When pressed to comment on India’s assertion that no one had shared China’s views during the meeting, Shuang said: “We are aware of India’s position, but what I talked about just now is China’s position. As a matter of fact, China and India stay in touch on this issue.”

Commenting on the massive number of Indian troops deployed in the region and the ongoing curfew, the Chinese official said that China has urged both India and Pakistan “to exercise restraint, step up dialogue and enhance mutual trust to deescalate the situation as soon as possible”.

“At the same time, as a responsible major country, China has been in close communication with both India and Pakistan and stands ready to play a constructive role.”

Regarding India’s announcement that it would invite Prime Minister Imran Khan to the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit to be held in New Delhi later this year, Shuang said that China is hopeful both sides “will have close communication, coordination and cooperation under the SCO framework to contribute to the grouping’s healthy development and greater role in regional affairs”.

“India and Pakistan are both major countries in South Asia. We encourage them to strengthen communication, resolve outstanding differences through dialogue and consultation, and constantly improve and grow bilateral relations,” Shuang concluded by saying.

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