India rejects China’s offer to play ‘constructive role’ over Kashmir, says it is a ‘bilateral issue’

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HIGHLIGHTS

  • India’s position on addressing all issues with Pakistan in a bilateral framework has not changed: Gopal Baglay
  • Crossborder terrorism emanating from a particular source is threatening peace and stability in the region: MEA

NEW DELHI: India on Thursday rejected China’s offer to play a constructive role on Kashmir+ and said “New Delhi’s position on addressing all issues with Pakistan in a bilateral framework has not changed.”

“At the heart of the matter is really the issue of cross-border terrorism perpetrated on India including on the people of the state of J&K. So, the matter is that cross-border terrorism in our region emanating from a particular source is threatening peace and stability in not only India but other neighbours,” MEA spokesperson Gopal Baglay said when asked to comment on China’s remarks.

China had on Wednesday said it was willing to play a “constructive role” in improving relations between India and Pakistan.

“We are ready to have a dialogue with Pakistan on Kashmir under a bilateral framework,” Baglay added at his weekly media briefing.

He also strongly rejected allegations by Pakistan that India was using chemical weapons in Kashmir, saying India is against the use of chemical weapon anywhere by anyone in any situation.

Baglay hit out at the Pakistan government for “reading” from Lashkar-e-Taiba’s terror script in glorifying Hizbul militant Burhan Wani, who was killed by security forces in July last year. Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang had earlier said India and Pakistan are important South Asian countries but the “situation in Kashmir hasattracted the attention of the international community.”

Expressing concern over the tension between India and Pakistan, Geng said “the conflict occurred near the Line of Control of Kashmir. This will not only harm the peace and stability of the two countries but also the peace and tranquillity of the region.”

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