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Indo-Japan ties should worry no one, says Khurshid

Last Updated: Wednesday, May 29, 2013 - 18:27

Allahabad: Referring to China`s reported discomfiture over the close Indo-Japan ties, External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on Wednesday said just as Beijing`s ties with Islamabad did not affect our relations with it, similarly warmth between India and Japan was no cause of concern.

"China is known to have maintained a close relation with Pakistan. We have never asked it to stop doing so nor have we given up working towards improving ties with Beijing."

"Similarly, our friendly relations with a country that China may not be comfortable with cannot be seen as a problem," Khurshid told reporters here.

At a time when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is in Japan, an influential Chinese daily said New Delhi`s wisdom lay in dealing with its disputes with Beijing calmly, undisturbed by "internal and international provocateurs".

Chinese communist party`s mouthpiece, the People`s Daily, lashed out at Japanese politicians, terming them as "petty burglars" on China-related issues.

Khurshid also sought to allay apprehensions stemming from reports that China was constructing roads close to the border along Ladakh and said, "both countries have been involved in building of infrastructure along the international boundary.

"A dispute exists between the two countries on a number of points. Though we have not been able to resolve the dispute, the dialogue process has never stopped and it will continue in the most cordial fashion".

He also said that India was adopting a "Look East" policy as part of which efforts were being made to strengthen relations with Bangladesh, Myanmar, Laos and Vietnam.

"We are working towards resolving the border dispute with Bangladesh which often comes in the way of secure the porous boundary through fencing.

"In Bangladesh, all political parties have shown unanimity over the issue. We hope that political one upmanship does not prevent us from arriving at a consensus," Khurshid added.

To another query, the External Affairs Minister said India is holding discussions with "Heart of Asia" countries to decide on the role that was to be played in Afghanistan after the US pulls out of the war-ravaged country in 2014.

"Right now we are already involved in a lot of infrastructure development work there. We are building roads, dams, schools and hospitals," he said.


First Published: Wednesday, May 29, 2013 - 18:27
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