Non-aggression key to regional stability: Rajnath’s veiled attack on China

The defence minister made the comment at a ministerial meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation in Moscow when Chinese Defence Minister Gen. Wei Fenghe was present

Rajnath Singh was addressing a ministerial meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation in Moscow on Friday. Photo: Twitter

Without naming China, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday (September 4) underlined that a climate of trust, non-aggression, sensitivity towards each other and peaceful resolution of differences are key to ensure regional peace and stability.

Singh was addressing a ministerial meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Moscow on Friday. He made the comments in the presence of Chinese Defence Minister Gen. Wei Fenghe.

The defence minister’s statement assumes significance in the backdrop of border standoff between Indian and Chinese soldiers along the Line of Actual Control (LAC).

“Peaceful stable and secure region of SCO member states – which is home to over 40% of global population, demands a climate of trust and cooperation, non-aggression, respect for international rules and norms, sensitivity to each other’s interest and peaceful resolution of differences,” Singh said while addressing the combined meeting of defence ministers of SCO.

Rajnath Singh also mentioned terrorism and extremism and advocated institutional capacity to deal with the challenges. “We need institutional capacity to deal with both traditional and non-traditional threats. Above all, we need to deal with terrorism, drug-trafficking and transnational crime. As you all are aware, India unequivocally condemns terrorism in all forms and manifestations, and condemns its proponents,” the defence minister said.

Clashes between India and China started in May and reached its peak after a bloody clash between soldiers from both sides in Galvan valley on June 15. Since then tension has been constantly rising with both sides refusing the budge. Tensions flared up after Indian troops thwarted Chinese moves in the Chushul sector on the intervening night of August 29 and August 30.

Chinese Defence Minister Fenghe has sought a meeting with Singh on the sidelines of the SCO gathering of Defence Ministers on Friday. The Union government has approved the meeting.

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