India Resists One-China Policy

Prime Minister Narendra Mondi and President Xi Jinping meeting in Wuhan for their “informal” summit in April. Image Credit: MEA via Twitter

India is pushing back against an attempt by Beijing to make it publicly re-affirm a “one-China” policy, according to reporting from Economic Times and Deccan Herald.

Delhi ceased to mention a “one-China” policy in 2010, after China began issuing distinct stapled visas to Indian citizens from Arunachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir, instead of the usual stamped visas.

Beijing’s “one-China” policy demands that other countries affirm that Taiwan is a part China.

Despite commercial links, India has no formal diplomatic ties with Taiwan, meaning that it is complying with the “one-China” policy for all practical purposes.

In response to Beijing’s urgings, India has told China ‘to refrain from projects in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) that violate India’s sovereignty,’ Economic Times reported, citing unnamed sources.

Strangely, neither story mentions Indian officials bringing up the issue of stapled visas. China may have eased up on issuing stapled visas to residents of Jammu and Kashmir in 2012, but it continues to issue them to people from Arunachal Pradesh, which China claims as “South Tibet”.

China’s move to get India to adopt a “one-China” policy come just as Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping are due to meet in Qingdao this weekend for the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit.

Ramping up pressure on Taiwan

Beijing has stepped up pressure on Taiwan in recent months. It has sent out letters to 36 foreign airlines, demanding they clearly depict Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau as parts of China. Several have already complied, most recently Qantas. Last month, clothing brand Gap apologised for a t-shirt showing a map of China without Taiwan and destroyed its remaining stock of the offending product. Also in May, the Dominican Republic broke ties with Taiwan and recognised China. Burkina Faso followed weeks later, leaving Taiwan with just 18 countries with which it enjoys diplomatic links.

China has also publicly wielded its military. In April, it a conducted a limited but highly publicised live-fire drill in the Taiwan Strait designed to ‘garner headlines more than provoke Taiwan’.

Nevertheless, on Thursday, Taiwan conducted drills of its own. Later this month, the US will open its new de-facto embassy in Taipei, the American Institute in Taiwan following a $250 million investment.

The US de-recognized Taiwan in 1979 and committed to a “one-China” policy. This only meant that the US recognized both Taiwan and the mainland were part of the same country. It did not specify which of the two governments ought to govern a unified China.

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