National / World

Sushma in China from Saturday, to hold talks with Wang Yi


By Gaurav Sharma

Beijing, Apr 17 (IANS): India's External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will hold bilateral talks with her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi during her two-day China visit beginning on Saturday.

Sushma Swaraj will meet Wang on the sidelines of the foreign ministers' meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Summit (SCO).

She will meet a more powerful Wang, who in March was elevated to China's top diplomatic post of State Councillor. They are likely to discuss a host of thorny issues.

India-China ties were severely hit by the 73-day military stand-off in Doklam last year. Both sides are now trying to restore normalcy to their ties by stepping up bilateral exchanges.

China's opposition to India's entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and its move to block bids at the UN to list Masood Azhar, chief of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed militant group, as a global terrorist, has irked New Delhi.

In addition, New Delhi has reservations about the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which cuts through Pakistan-held Kashmir that is claimed by India.

Sushma Swaraj, whose last visit to China was in 2015, is also likely to meet other top Chinese leaders.

India's Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will also visit China next week and hold a dialogue with her counterpart.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will meet Chinese President Xi Jinping in June on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Summit.

India and Pakistan were admitted to the China-led block in 2017.


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