PM holds meeting to discuss China threat

PM Manmohan Singh chaired a meeting of the CCS to review China`s recent posturing.

New Delhi: Amid reports of China`s deployment of troops in the Pakistan-controlled Kashmir, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Tuesday chaired a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security to review China`s recent posturing and India`s options of dealing with it.

Senior Cabinet ministers, including Defence Minister AK Antony, Home Minister P. Chidambaram and External Affairs Minister SM Krishna were among those who attended the meeting.

India`s Ambassador to China S Jaishankar briefed the ministers at the meeting that discussed how best to deal with China`s perceived aggressiveness towards issues critical to India`s sovereignty.

The meeting came amid reports that China has deployed about 11,000 troops in the Gilgit-Baltistan region of Jammu and Kashmir which has been held by Pakistan.

The 90-minute meeting discussed the recent denial of a visa to a senior Indian general commanding the northern sector, which includes Jammu and Kashmir which is seen here as an attempt by China to question India`s sovereignty over Jammu and Kashmir.

India had put on hold defence exchanges after Beijing`s refusal to allow the visit.

The crucial meeting ended with a consensus among ministers to adopt a firm attitude towards China, specially over issues that question India`s sovereignty over its territory, but agreed that the message should be conveyed in such a manner so as not to upset the larger relationship, sources said.

The meeting also discussed what Krishna described in parliament as Beijing`s "more than normal interests" in the Indian Ocean region.

"The government of India has come to realise that China has been showing more than normal interest in the Indian Ocean affairs. So we are closely monitoring the Chinese intentions," Krishna told Lok Sabha.


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