Chinese Embassy in India refutes statements made by senior US officials during India visit

The 2+2 dialogue between US and India was targeted towards deepening strategic ties between the states and countering China's influence in the region.

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Image Credit: The US Government/twitter account.

Kathmandu. The United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the Secretary of Defence Mark Esper landed on India for the first leg of Pompeo’s Asia trip on Monday for a 2+2 ministerial dialogue. Following the visit, Mike Pompeo pressed upon the threat posed by China’s increasing influence in the region. The Chinese Embassy in New Delhi has simultaneously released a statement on Tuesday underlining its stance on the matter, refuting the claims made by the US officials during their visit.

While in conversation with the Indian Defense Minister Rajnath Singh, Mike Pompeo claimed that both the countries needed to work on a plethora of issues from cooperation regarding COVID-19 to addressing the threat that China posed. “Our cooperation on the pandemic that originated in Wuhan, to confronting the Chinese Communist Party’s threats to security and freedom to promoting peace and stability throughout the region,” he said.

Pompeo was incredibly vocal regarding China’s presence in the greater Indo-Pacific region when member states under the Quadrilateral Alliance (Quad) met in Tokyo this year as well. He slammed the Communist Party of China, accusing it of “exploitation, corruption and coercion”. When news surfaced that Beijing had deployed around 60,000 troops to the Line of Actual Control (LAC), he once again reiterated that China was a threat to the Quad nations. The Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary at the US State Department’s Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, Dean Thompson, ahead of Pompeo’s visit to Sri Lanka had further urged Colombo to make “difficult but necessary choices,” to retain its its economic sovereignty, hinting towards China’s involvement in the state.

The Chinese Embassy situated in New Delhi has now released a statement that China has always upheld relations with its neighboring states on the basis of “mutual respect.” It condemned Pompeo for spreading “old lies,” and claimed that “China resolutely opposes behaviour of engaging in unilateralism and bullying. By hyping up the so-called “China threat”, the US is in fact making pretexts for maintaining its global hegemony and containing China’s development.”

The statement goes on to note that the Indo-Pacific strategy, that is endorsed by the US is simply a way for the nation to maintain its dominance within the region. Addressing the boundary conflict between India and China in Eastern Ladakh, the Embassy stressed that it was a bilateral issue to be discussed and resolved by the concerned states, and a third party interference would not be appreciated.

On the matter of the blame being cast on China for the global crisis caused by the novel coronavirus, the statement maintained that the officials were “distorting facts.” In a sharp retort to China’s handling of the crisis, the Embassy expressed its “hope” that the “US politicians could focus on their own epidemic response and saving lives instead of shifting blame on others.”

The statement ends with the curt message for the US to stop highlighting the supposed “China-threat” that was not conducive to the peace in the region. Beijing’s response comes at a time when the US and China are openly at a trade war, and are regularly exchanging barbed words of insults when it comes to Taiwan. It has already cautioned the US to not “bully” Sri Lanka, ahead of Pompeo’s visit in Colombo.


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