`India, US share strategic objectives on China`

China has adopted a hard posture over Indian attempts to explore oil in South China Sea.

New Delhi: At a time when China has adopted a hard posture over Indian attempts to explore oil in South China Sea, a latest think tank report says India and US have many shared strategic objectives vis-à-vis China.

The report, prepared by a joint study group for US based Council for Foreign relations and the India chapter of Aspen Institute, stated that for a stable international order the role of China must be sought and enlisted.

"Both India and US have major national interests that are best served by good relations with China," the study says but adds that both countries also find "some Chinese actions incompatible with the reciprocal creation of goodwill.”

The report mentions that "heavy handed PRC (People`s Republic of China) actions since 2007," have been particularly worrisome for the United States, India and other nations in the region.

Chinese test of anti-satellite weapon in 2007, incursion into the Bhutan-India-China border and also the Chinese claim of "indisputable sovereignty over the South China Sea" were listed by the study group as some of the worrying Chinese actions.

In their report, the study group mentions that the US and India "will have a challenging task in the period ahead in determining which joint policy responses towards China can be explicit or implicit”.

The report further went on to say that it was the Chinese external behaviour which "has stimulated New Delhi and Washington to enhance their dialogue on East Asia”.

The study suggested several policy prescriptions which could be adopted by the US and India with respect to a more assertive and powerful China.

The report suggested that the US should "persistently express its strong support for India`s peaceful rise" while India should continue to welcome "US presence in Asia-Pacific".

The report suggested, "US and India should also regularly brief each other on their respective issues involving China." Speaking at the release of the report, Former Indian ambassador to the US Naresh chandra said that China and the US had a greater level of engagement than India and the US.

"We do not have a history of working with the US," Chandra said, adding that at one time there were suspicions about the other sides.

"Those days in Indo-US relations are now gone," Chandra said.

Apart from Chandra, other eminent people who were part of the study group were former US Ambassador to India Robert Blackwill, former foreign secretary KS Bajpai, former National Security Advisor Brajesh Mishra and Ashley Tellis.

The report also suggested that India and the US should strategically work to encourage stability in Pakistan and Afghanistan as well.


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