China, India may conclude confidence building military treaty
Tara Shankar Sahay in New Delhi
Despite billing it as important and substantive,
Foreign Secretary Salman Haider and senior officials at
the ministry of external affairs divulged scarce information
on the first-ever visit of Chinese President
Jiang Zemin to India from November 28 to December
Apart from furnishing details regarding the composition of the
Chinese delegation and the Indian dignitaries
whom President Jiang and his colleagues will meet during their stay
in New Delhi, Haider, Indian Ambassador to Beijing Vijayan
Nambiar and Secretary (east) in the MEA T C A Rangachari
chose to divulge precious little.
Asked by a reporter to comment on Sino-Pakistani nuclear co-operation,
Haider said, ''we do not know what kind of nuclear assistance
is being given by China to Pakistan," adding that the issue is not
likely to figure during the talks with the Chinese delegation.
However, he hinted that the matter could crop up during discussions
on regional peace.
While emphasising that an agreement is likely to be concluded
between India and China on confidence-building measures
along the Line of Control, Haidar told a reporter that he did not agree with the
latter's observation that the line of demarcation along the
border was not clear and it had taken a 'back-seat'.
Referring to the border issue with China, Haider pointed out that President
Jiang's visit is being seen as an effort to evolve a co-operative
relationship about making the India-China border a zone of
peace. He also did not agree with the reporter that no headway
had been made on the border issue, saying ''we have been able
to bring about a regime of peace and tranquility'' in the border
Haider asserted that the progress in this context was
''systematic'', if not ''dramatic'' and reasonable.
likely to be signed between the two countries is the maintenance
of an Indian consulate in Hong Kong after China takes over the city
in July 1997, an agreement on crime and drug-trafficking,
bilateral investment protection agreement and shipping.