Pakistan wary of US-Indian military alliance against China
Pakistan’s envoy to the United Nations expressed suspicion of growing US military ties with India, a burgeoning partnership aimed at building a regional alliance against China, which he said has failed. you don’t have to be an enemy of the United States.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar “reiterated the strength of the United States-India relationship to advance peace, prosperity and security in the Indo-Pacific and in the world ”during a call Thursday, according to a reading provided by the State Department. The next day, Pompeo and Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi “discussed a range of issues, including the importance of US-Pakistan cooperation on the Afghan peace process and the importance of efforts to support stability regional “.
Longtime rivals India and Pakistan have both forged ties with the United States, but Washington’s relationship with New Delhi has grown significantly in recent years and Islamabad has concerns.
The two have long accused each other of sponsoring terrorism against each other and regarding India’s accusations that Islamabad is letting militant groups run wild, Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to the UN Munir Akram , said News week he hopes that the United States “will play an objective role, that their position will not continue to be marred by their desire for a military alliance with India”.
“Of course, we think this whole idea of looking for an alliance is wrong,” Akram said. News week, calling it a “bad idea for the West”.
“We have a lot of evidence indicating that India is sponsoring terrorism from Afghanistan to Pakistan,” he said, saying Pakistan has succeeded in containing its internal militant threat. “We have the evidence, we have presented the evidence, we are ready to present more evidence.”
“We are changing history,” he added.
The United States, however, has cast suspicion on this claim, still viewing Pakistan as a place where violent insurgents operate freely. “We continue to urge Pakistan to take lasting and irreversible measures to dismantle the Pakistan-based militant groups that pose a threat to the region and the world,” a State Department spokesperson said. News week.
“The United States stands ready to work with Pakistan as it upholds its stated commitment to fight militant and terrorist groups indiscriminately,” the spokesperson added.
As U.S. foreign policy shifts more toward Asia, Washington’s relationship with regional states is evolving. President Donald Trump’s visit to India in February meant not only a strategic, but personal relationship with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a time when his nation appears to be an increasingly important node in a US-led partnership. known as “Free and Open Indo.” -Pacific ”, a group that also includes Australia, Japan and, to a lesser extent, other countries in the region.
This quasi-coalition, by nature, was not necessarily targeting Pakistan, however, but its primary partner, China.
Last month, Defense Secretary Mark Esper named China as the United States’ main strategic competitor, and Pompeo formally challenged Beijing’s claims to the South China Sea before launching a rallying cry to mobilize support. international against the People’s Republic. Also in July, the United States conducted naval exercises alongside its Australian, Indian and Japanese partners in waters it defined as the Indo-Pacific.
Washington pledged to defend Canberra by the ANZUS Treaty of 1951 and Tokyo by the Treaty of Mutual Security and Cooperation of 1960. India, a close partner of the Soviet Union throughout the Cold War and still l one of the main clients of Russian defense, is not an ally of the United States. but it was named a “major defense partner” in 2016 and these links are developing.
“Military and military cooperation between the United States and India has increased dramatically over the past two decades as part of the overall strengthening of our bilateral relationship, which reflects an increasingly deep strategic convergence over a series of questions, “the State Department spokesman said. News week.
“The US-Indian Partnership advances our shared commitment to advance democracy and the rule of law, freedom of navigation, the fight against terrorism, and private sector-led economic growth in the Indo-Pacific region and in the world, ”the spokesperson said.
The Indo-Pacific has become the main theater of what the American fold sees as a geopolitical and ideological battle. Tensions in the South China Sea have been unusually high in recent years, and the United States has also challenged China over sovereignty issues over Hong Kong and Taiwan, although neither of those conflicts have spilled blood. between the powers.
In June, however, a feud between Chinese and Indian forces across their disputed border between Chinese-administered Aksai Chin and India-administered Ladakh turned deadly, with casualties on both sides. U.S. officials such as Pompeo quickly sided with India, seeing it as part of China’s aggressive actions in the region. However, New Delhi declined Trump’s offer of mediation and instead sought to resolve the issue bilaterally with Beijing.
These consultations appear to have ended the fighting, but a subtle war of words persists, particularly with Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin recently declaring that “any unilateral change in the status quo in the Kashmir region is illegal and invalid “. The declaration came exactly one year after India revoked the special semi-autonomous status of Kashmir it controls, including Ladakh.
“The Chinese side has no locus standi on this issue and it is advisable not to comment on the internal affairs of other nations,” replied the Indian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a statement attributed to a spokesperson.
China then pushed the issue forward by raising the sensitive topic for discussion at the UN Security Council, further angering India. “This was not the first time that China has sought to raise a subject which is solely an internal Indian matter,” India’s foreign ministry said. “As on previous occasions, this attempt also met with little support from the international community.”
“We strongly reject China’s interference in our internal affairs and urge it to draw the appropriate conclusions from these failed attempts,” he added.
Akram said News week that Pakistan recognized Aksai Chin’s “strategic value” to China, claiming that “for India to play the role of victim, I think he is rather hypocritical after boasting that she will take over the whole of Jammu and Kashmir, including Aksai Chin “. As Pakistan and India continue to fight for their own disputed Kashmir border, ties between Islamabad and Beijing have grown significantly in recent years, especially thanks to a Chinese global economic investment plan that has frustrated the United States.
The vast China-Pakistan economic corridor is part of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s intercontinental Belt and Road initiative, which includes infrastructure projects and trade deals from East to West. Seen by some countries as a lifeline, Washington set out to describe the company as a debt trap maneuver to give Beijing leverage over other governments.
Here, too, Akram saw the hypocrisy. “If you don’t want the Chinese to do it, then do it,” he said. News week. “But don’t tell us not to do it with the Chinese when you can’t do it yourself, it’s like a dog in the nursery,” he said. “The United States should, as you say, lead by example.”
“If the United States is really worried that the Chinese plans are unfair on terms that are not good enough, well, they should come up with alternatives,” he added.
Akram said he sees trade disputes between Washington and Beijing as “natural”, but “the real problem arises when the United States appears to be encouraging separatism in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Xinjiang and others.” He explained that these problems “are vital for the Chinese, they would resist naturally, but they are not vital problems for the United States, nor the South China Sea.”
“We do not believe that there is, in objective terms, any justification for a confrontation between China and the United States, as long as the two countries respect each other’s systems, the vital national interests of the other. and the serenity and territorial integrity of the other, ”he added.