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US secretary of state Mike Pompeo.reuters
US secretary of state Mike Pompeo.reuters

China says Pompeo’s India visit shows US’ ‘Cold War mentality’

  • China reacted after Pompeo and Esper called out its acts of hostility while the world was focused on fighting covid-19

China on Wednesday slammed the US for what it called violation of “the norms of international relations and basic principles of diplomacy" and instigating countries against Beijing.

This has exposed Washington’s “Cold War mentality and ideological bias", according to a statement by the Chinese embassy in New Delhi. “The Chinese side expresses its firm opposition to it," it said.

The comments were a reaction to US secretaries of state and defence, Mike Pompeo and Mark Esper respectively, calling out China’s aggression against its neighbours in Asia as the world has been focused on dealing with the aftermath of the covid-19 pandemic.

Pompeo, in particular, made a pointed reference to the 20 Indian soldiers killed in a clash with Chinese People’s Liberation Army soldiers in Galwan in Ladakh in June and said that the US will stand with India. That Pompeo and Esper travelled to India for the India-US 2+2 talks in the midst of the pandemic could be read as a show of US support to India, which is in the midst of a military standoff with China in Ladakh.

Pompeo accused China of encroaching into sovereign economic zones, “trashing the environment" and indulging in massive illegal fishing. “America is different. We respect sovereignty," he said.

China countered by saying that it is “known to all that China has been unswervingly committed to peaceful development and developed friendly cooperation with our neighbours" based on mutual respect.

“China has always upheld multilateralism and remained committed to maintaining an international system with the United Nations at its core and an international order based on international law. ...By hyping up the so-called ‘China threat’, the US is making pretexts for maintaining its global hegemony and containing China’s development," according to the embassy statement. “The boundary question is a bilateral matter...China and India have the wisdom and ability to handle their differences properly. There’s no space for a third party to intervene," it said.

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