India takes jibe at PoK road project

India today pointed to the “illegal so-called China Pakistan Economic Corridor in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir” to criticise China’s reference to Jammu and Kashmir at the United Nations.

The spokesperson of the external affairs ministry Raveesh Kumar said China, which is a close ally of Pakistan, is well aware of India’s position that Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh are an “integral part of India and that the recent developments are entirely a matter internal to us”.

“We expect that other countries will respect India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and desist from efforts to change the status quo through the illegal so-called China Pakistan Economic Corridor in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir,” he said.

The $60 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project, which connects Gwadar Port in Balochistan with China’s Xinjiang province, is the flagship project of its ambitious Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The corridor is one of the flash-points in ties between India and China.

India has repeatedly expressed concerns about BRI, largely because of CPEC, which passes through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, and the uneven playing field created by China for President Xi Jinping’s flagship connectivity project.

Kumar’s comments came in response to the reference made by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi to Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh in his address during 74th session of the UN General Assembly.

Wang said that the “dispute” should be peacefully and properly addressed in accordance with the UN Charter, Security Council resolutions and the bilateral agreement.

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