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'Not On China's Terms': EAM Jaishankar Says Beijing Must Respect India's Interests For Balanced Relations

Swarajya Staff

May 28, 2023, 12:39 PM | Updated 12:39 PM IST

S Jaishankar
S Jaishankar

In a recent address at Anant National University, India's External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar, highlighted the complex challenge that India faces from China and underscored the importance of achieving a mutual equilibrium in the bilateral relationship.

Referring to China's incursions in eastern Ladakh, Jaishankar emphasized the necessity of maintaining peace and tranquillity between the two nations to safeguard their overall relationship.

During his speech, Jaishankar acknowledged the increased visibility of the challenges posed by China in the border areas over the past three years. He stated that the Indian government has implemented measures to prevent any unilateral attempts to alter the status quo in these regions.

"There are clearly responses that are required, and those responses have been undertaken by the government. And a lot of it to ensure that no attempt is made to unilaterally change the status quo in the border areas," Jaishankar was quoted by PTI as saying.

Jaishankar highlighted the importance of finding a balance in the relationship, stating, "But that balance cannot be on the terms of the other party. Then it is not a balance. There has to be something mutual. Mutual respect, sensitivity, and interest have to be the basis of the relationship."

He further expressed the need for China to acknowledge and address India's concerns and interests in order to establish a constructive and long-term partnership.

The External Affairs Minister emphasized that if China demonstrates respect, sensitivity, and recognition towards India, it would contribute to a better and more harmonious relationship between the two nations. However, he also acknowledged that if these conditions are not met, India would firmly assert its opposition and stand up for its rights.

"How can we get along long term if you don't respect me, if you are not sensitive to my concerns, if you ignore my interest?" the External Affairs Minister told the gathering, adding, "But if we do not, I think we need to stand up for our rights, and we need to be firm in asserting opposition. And that, unfortunately, currently is the situation."

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