China denies visa to Kashmir Army commander, India hits back

China denies visa to Kashmir Army commander, India hits back

China denies visa to Kashmir Army commander, India hits back

Reacting strongly to this, India has put on hold visits by Chinese military officials till the matter is resolved.

The visit by a General-rank officer to China as part of defence exchanges was agreed upon between the two countries in January during the annual defence dialogue, sources said here on Friday.

The visit was fixed for July but it was not decided at that time as to who will be send by India, the sources said.

When India conveyed its decision to send Lt Gen Jaswal, China wrote back saying that he came from a "sensitive location of Jammu and Kashmir" and that "people from this part of the world come with a different kind of visa", sources said.

The Chinese side suggested that India may send some other officer and not cancel the visit.

Sources said the Chinese objection came close to the visit and so the matter could not be resolved and the trip could not take place.

Commenting on this, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vishnu Prakash said the visit did not take place "due to certain reasons" but did not elaborate.

He, however, made it clear that China needed to be sensitive to India's concerns.

"While we value our exchanges with China, there must be sensitivity to each others concerns. Our dialogue with China on these issues is ongoing," he said.

Upset over Beijing's action, New Delhi has kept in abeyance permission to two Chinese defence officials to come to India for undertaking a course at the National Defence College.

A pending visit by Indian military officials to China has also been put off by India.

Toeing the Pakistani line, China in the recent past has been refusing to issue visas to people from Jammu and Kashmir on their passports as it treats the state as "disputed".

Instead, it issues visas on loose sheets of paper, which is not accepted by Indian immigration officials.

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