Modi not to attend OBOR meet in Beijing

Modi not to attend OBOR meet in Beijing

Modi not to attend OBOR meet in Beijing

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will not attend the conclave which Chinese president Xi Jinping will host in Beijing in May to drum up support for his One-Belt-One-Road (OBOR) initiative.

New Delhi turned down Beijing’s request for a high-level political representation from India to the OBOR conclave.

It has not yet been decided if New Delhi will be represented at a lower level, but the sources DH spoke to did not rule out the possibility of India finally boycotting the conclave.

Beijing is yet to send a formal invitation to the prime minister, but checked with New Delhi through diplomatic channel if India was willing to be represented in the conclave at a high-level.

India is opposed to the OBOR, because China’s ambitious connectivity initiative includes an economic corridor, which is proposed to pass through areas New Delhi accuses Pakistan of illegally occupying in Kashmir.

The proposed China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will link Kashgar in Xinjiang in northwestern China and a deep seaport at Gwadar in Balochistan in southwestern Pakistan.

Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar conveyed India’s position on the CPEC in particular and the OBOR in general during his meetings with China’s State Councillor Yang Jiechi, Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Executive Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Yesui in Beijing on February 21 and 22.

He pointed out that the proposed CPEC passes through an area that New Delhi considered “an integral part” of India, albeit under illegal occupation of Pakistan, sources told DH.

Jaishankar conveyed to the Chinese government officials that the proposed CPEC would infringe on the sovereignty of India.