India wants good neighborly relations with Pakistan, China: Jaishankar
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar sent a stern message to China and Pakistan during his interaction with the Indian community in Cyprus on Friday. He stated that India wants good relations with its neighboring nations, but this doesn't mean "excusing" terrorism. Speaking about the border issues with China, Jaishankar said India would never accept any attempt to unilaterally change the Line of Actual Control.
Why does this story matter?
- The India-Pakistan ties have been predominantly damaged by the Kashmir conflict and the cross-border terrorism suspected to originate from Pakistan.
- Meanwhile, India's relations with China remain fragile since the 2020 deadly dispute in eastern Ladakh.
- The government led by Narendra Modi had claimed it aims to maintain normal neighborly relations with Pakistan and China in an atmosphere free of violence, hostility, and terror.
Terrorism will never force India to negotiating table: Jaishankar
Without naming Pakistan, the foreign minister stated: "We will never allow terrorism to force us to the negotiating table. We want good neighborly relations with everybody, but that does not mean excusing, looking away, or rationalizing terrorism." Speaking on the border-related issues with China, Jaishankar claimed challenges have amplified during COVID-19, and relations with Beijing are no longer normal.
Significance of Jaishankar's Cyprus visit
This is Jaishankar's first official Cyprus visit as the two nations celebrate 60 years of diplomatic partnership. During his visit, the foreign minister met his Cypriot counterpart Nikos Christodoulides and penned a deal on military and defense cooperation, another Letter of Intent on mobility and immigration. India also agreed to Cyprus joining the International Solar Alliance (ISA).
Here's what Jaishankar said on the Kashmir issue at UNSC
On December 14, India strongly criticized Pakistan for raising the Kashmir issue at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). Jaishankar had asserted that a country that hosted ex-al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and attacked a neighboring Parliament couldn't "sermonize" in the UN body. His remarks came after Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto brought up the Kashmir issue while speaking while debating on reformed multilateralism.
Jaishankar on India-Pakistan cross-border terrorism
"What our discourse must never accept is the normalization of such threats. The question of justifying what the world regards as unacceptable should not even arise. That certainly applies to state sponsorship of cross-border terrorism," he had said. "Nor can hosting Osama bin Laden and attacking a neighboring Parliament serve as credentials to sermonize before this Council," he added.