BEIJING: China has said it will give a global push to its ambitious Silk Road initiative after a UN Security Council resolution called for its implementation by member-states, notwithstanding India’s sovereignty concerns in Pakistan-administered Kashmir.
China’s official assertion came as its official state media in Beijing asked India to adopt a “more pragmatic” approach towards the initiative, claiming global support for President Xi Jinping’s pet project whose stated aim is to link China with Euro-Asia through a maze of connecting rail, road and port projects.
China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told reporters in Beijing yesterday that in the Resolution 2344 unanimously adopted by the 15-member UNSC on March 17, the concept of building a community of shared future for mankind was incorporated for the first time, reflecting global consensus over the project. “The resolution urged all parties to further advance the Belt and Road Initiative and raised specific requirements on strengthening security safeguards,” Hua said.
“China would like to work with UN members to actively move forward the building of the Belt and Road Initiative following the Security Council resolution and jointly build a community of shared future for mankind that enjoys lasting peace, universal security, common prosperity, openness and inclusiveness, cleanness and beauty,” she said.
The resolution called for strengthening economic cooperation between Afghanistan and its neighbours through Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India gas pipeline and Chabahar port project between Afghanistan, India and Iran, and China’s Silk Road and Maritime Silk Road initiatives.
The multi-billion-dollar ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative is the official name of the Silk Road or the Belt and Road project.
It includes the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road to connect China with ports across the world as well as the USD 46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) – which passes through the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir – and the Bangladesh, China, India and Myanmar Economic (BCIM) corridor.
Despite India’s concerns about the CPEC passing through PaK, work on corridor is progressing rapidly. There isn’t any official update yet on the rest of the ‘One Belt, One Road’ projects.
India has officially protested to China over the CPEC connecting western China’s Xinjiang region with Pakistan through Pakistan-administered Kashmir.
The official Chinese media claims that the inclusion of the OBOR in the UNSC resolution is an endorsement of the initiative by the world body.
“Despite concerns from India, broader support has been given to the OBOR from the international community,” said an article in the ruling Communist Party-run Global Times.
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