China wants India to “reserve differences”, Chinese ambassador Sun Weidong said on Tuesday while addressing students and teachers. “China and India, as two ancient civilisations, should respect and learn from each other, treat each other as equals, and seek common ground while reserving differences,” he added.
Bilateral relations, he said, “should not be disturbed by one thing at a time”. While his remarks were relatively innocuous, they carried a deeper meaning in the current context.
Referring to the Galwan clash, the envoy called it an “unfortunate incident” and “a brief moment from the perspective of history”. The two sides should now “seek common ground while reserving differences”, media reports quoted him as saying.
In an oblique way, Sun addressed the two main issues for China — the ongoing economic ‘de-coupling’ that India is undertaking, and possible action against Confucius Institutes in the country.
China’s mantra of boxing away border differences is not working with India any more — India has stressed that the resolution of the border dispute and peace and tranquillity on the LAC are essential pre-requisites for normal relations between the two countries.
Sun stressed that China’s policy towards India had not changed.