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Chinese envoy to India open to India-China-Pak trilateral summit on SCO sidelines

By Shubham

Chinese Ambassador to India Luo Zhaohui on Monday, June 18, backed the idea of a trilateral summit among India, Pakistan and China on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) to better their relations and achieve a higher degree of regional cooperation.

Speaking at a seminar in New Delhi titled 'Beyond Wuhan: How Far and Fast Can China-India Relations Go', Luo said the suggestion that came up from the Indian side about holding a trilateral summit between India, China and Pakistan on the sidelines of the SCO was "constructive".

Chinese envoy to India open to India-China-Pak trilateral summit on SCO sidelines

India and Pakistan were inducted as full-fledged members of the SCO at the Astana Summit in June 2017 and they attended the 18th summit of the grouping as full members in Qingdao in China earlier this month. Both China and Russia, the two biggest members of the forum, welcomed the two South Asian countries' entry into the body and hoped that this would help them resolve their disputes.

The Qingdao summit took place just over a month after Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Chinese President Xi Jinping in the Chinese coastal city of Wuhan for an informal talk to set things in order between the two large neighbours in various fields, including the border disputes. India and China found themselves in a serious military showdown over Doklam for two and half months in 2017 and the Modi-Jinping summit was the first major one following the tussle which was at a distance from leading to a war.

Citing an analogy, Zuo said China, Russia and Mongolia also had a similar summit in the past and there was no reason that India, China and Pakistan couldn't do it.

Stressing that all parties gained from peace at the borders, Luo said that India-China relations couldn't stand another Doklam-like incident and sought in a tweet a "mutually acceptable solution through Special Representatives' Meeting while adopting confidence building measures".

The Chinese envoy also presented a four-point vision for the future of Sino-India cooperation and it featured: signing a treaty of friendship and cooperation; negotiating a bilateral free trade agreement; improving connectivity and working for early solution to the boundary issues.

Luo, who tweeted that a new bilateral trade target has been set up for $100 billion by 2022, also stressed on people-to-people contact for bettering friendship and mutual understanding.

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