09:14 GMT +312 December 2019
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    An Indian national flag is flown next to the Chinese national emblem. (File)

    Indian Government Reveals Its Stance on China Standoff to Opposition MPs

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    Asia & Pacific
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    The Indian government finally took the opposition parties into confidence by briefing 19 MPs on the China standoff and the Kashmir situation after the recent terrorist attack on a Hindu pilgrimage.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) — Held at the residence of Minister of Home Affairs Rajnath Singh, the meeting was addressed by External Aaffairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, where the government's stand on contentious issues was explained to the assembled MPs. Defense Minister Arun Jaitley, National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar also attended the discussion.

    "Two presentations were made by the government. Foreign Secretary [S.Jaishankar] made a presentation on Doklam issue. He said that China is in breach, it is attempting to encroach upon  Indian territory. Now, they want to encroach into Bhutanese territory of Doklam. The government is protecting Indian territory. Our party is satisfied with the government's stand on China," A. Navaneethakrishnan, MP from the southern regional party AIADMK, told Sputnik.

    The reiteration of the government’s intention to go with dialogue comes after Jaishankar was quoted in The Hindu that there have been worse situations that have been resolved through dialogue in reference to the Dokalam stalemate.

    MEA spokesperson Gopal Baglay said all participants expressed strong support for India’s approach and also for the need of national unity.

    "There was widespread appreciation of the Astana understanding between India and China that differences between them shouldn't become disputes," Baglay was quoted as saying by the Times of India. "The unique nature of very close and longstanding India — Bhutan relationship was recognized," he added.

    Leaders from the Congress, the Left and other regional parties were also present.

    "The government said that they'll tackle the situation through dialogue," CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury said.

    The meeting was conducted an effort to build consensus on dealings with India's biggest neighbor and Kashmir, sources said.

    China and India have been stuck in a standoff in Dokalam near the Bhutan tri-junction for the past three weeks after a Chinese army construction party came to build a road.


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