India condemns Chinese envoy’s views on India-Sri Lanka ties – India Times Hindi News

Colombo: In a strong reaction to Chinese Ambassador to Sri Lanka Qi Zhenhong’s remarks, the Indian High Commission in Colombo said on Saturday that his views were a violation of basic diplomatic etiquette and may reflect a personal trait or a larger national attitude. The Indian High Commission also said that Qi’s view of Sri Lanka’s northern neighbor may be colored by his own country’s behavior.

The High Commission, which made a series of tweets, also referred to Qi’s remarks on the visit of a Chinese spy vessel to Hambantota port in Sri Lanka and said that applying a geopolitical context to the visit of an alleged scientific research vessel is one. Signal.

The High Commission also referred to reports of China’s debt-trap diplomacy and said that “opacity and debt-driven agendas are now a major challenge especially for smaller countries”. It said Sri Lanka, which is facing an unprecedented economic crisis, needs support, not unwanted pressure or unnecessary disputes, to fulfill the agenda of another country.

“We have taken note of the remarks of the Chinese ambassador. His violation of basic diplomatic etiquette may be a personal trait or reflect a larger national attitude. His view of Sri Lanka’s northern neighbor may have been colored by the behavior of his own country. India, we assure them, is very different. The Indian High Commission said it is a gift to make a geopolitical reference to the visit of an alleged scientific research vessel.

“The opacity and debt-driven agenda is now a major challenge, especially for smaller countries. Recent developments are a warning. What Sri Lanka needs is support, not unwanted pressure or unnecessary controversies to fulfill another country’s agenda. .

India had earlier rejected China’s request to pressure Colombo to postpone the voyage of a high-tech Chinese research vessel to the Hambantota port, saying Sri Lanka is a sovereign country and takes its own independent decisions. .

“We reject the objections in the statement about India. Sri Lanka is a sovereign country and takes its own independent decisions,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi had said at a media briefing.

Bagchi said that India will take the best decision regarding its security interests and this takes into account the prevailing situation in the region, especially in the border areas.

The Chinese ambassador had made adverse remarks about India in a statement. He also spoke about the scientific research activities of the ‘Yuan Wang 5’ ship and said that “external constraints based on so-called ‘security concerns’ but without any evidence of certain forces actually completely interfering with Sri Lanka’s sovereignty and independence.” Is. “

A Ceylon Today report said that Sri Lanka is currently negotiating a USD three billion loan from the IMF to tide over its foreign exchange crisis, but the ‘G7’ (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan) , UK and USA) countries have agreed to restructure the debt of Sri Lanka, not China.

Responding to Sri Lanka’s request by China to change its tune on debt relief, a spokesperson for the Chinese embassy said the ball was in Sri Lanka’s court, not China’s.

The spokesperson told the Daily Mirror that China had informed Sri Lanka’s finance ministry three months ago about its readiness to discuss how to resolve the debt issue with Chinese banks.

Sri Lanka’s total bilateral debt at the end of 2020 was estimated at $6.2 billion by the IMF.

Japan and China hold the largest shares. India has provided around USD 4 billion this year mainly through credit lines and swaps to help keep Sri Lanka’s economy afloat. Sri Lanka also has an international sovereign bond debt of $14 billion.

China’s strategy of trapping countries in its debt trap has led Sri Lanka to rely heavily on China for economic aid and military equipment. Sri Lanka also took bulk loans for various development projects.

But during the recent crisis in the country, when Sri Lanka has been pleading for more support from China for months, to no avail, Channel News Asia reported.

Beijing has done little to help the country through its devastating economic downturn, providing far less aid than India.

India proceeded to address Sri Lanka’s desperate food and fuel shortage with more than USD 3.8 billion in aid. In contrast, Beijing provided a relatively meager 74 million USD.

While India extended a currency swap arrangement with Sri Lanka in April, the People’s Bank of China has suspended its own swap line as the country lacks sufficient foreign exchange reserves.

China has also expressed reluctance to waive its Sri Lankan loans, playing up allegations of skimping when it comes to debt rescheduling. China’s record in the region has ruled out negotiating debt relief with other creditors and preferred to engage in covert, bilateral debt restructuring.