China hopes India, Pakistan will improve ties through dialogue

Beijing, March 14 (IANS) China has expressed hope that India and Pakistan will overcome their differences through a renewed dialogue process that stalled last year following unrest in Jammu and Kashmir and the Uri terror attack.

“Both India and Pakistan are China’s important neighbours and important countries in South Asia. China hopes that India and Pakistan can enhance mutual trust and improve relations through more dialogues,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said during a press briefing on Monday in Beijing.

“This is conducive to not only the two countries themselves but also to regional prosperity and development,” Chunying added.

The spokesperson added that China also looks forward to the early accession of Pakistan and India to the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) as full members so they could work with other members for the security, stability, development and prosperity of the region.

“The memorandum on the obligations for India and Pakistan to obtain membership in the SCO was signed at the SCO Tashkent Summit in 2016. Currently, all sides are going through relevant legal procedures in accordance with the memorandum,” the spokesperson said while responding to a question.

Relations between Pakistan and India worsened in September 2016 when militants attacked an army base in Uri town of Jammu and Kashmir, killing 19 soldiers. India has blamed the attack on Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohamed terror group. The Indian Army on September 29 carried out surgical strikes on terror launch pads across the Line of Control, which added to the tensions.

–IANS

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