Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s meeting with US President Donald Trump has attracted opposite reactions from China and Pakistan. Chinese state daily Global Times today reported Chinese experts as saying, “China welcomes the development of relations between India and the US, as the leaders from the two countries met on Monday, saying relations have ‘never been better’.”
Ni Feng, deputy director of the Institute of American Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times on Tuesday that Trump has given a “positive spin” to India-US relationship. “Even though US-Indian relations have been improving in the past decade, Trump’s attitude towards India had been unclear before this meeting, and he has given it a positive spin,” Ni said.
The expert further said that Trump considers India a “big power that requires his attention, but not as much as China and Russia.” This is in contrast to Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama. Ni said that Obama had “many ideas on using India to restrain China.” The Global Times report noted that the Modi-Trump meeting took place after months of “trade friction” since the US President came to power.
Chinese experts also allayed speculations that Trump would use India as a “pawn” to restrain China, which an opinion article in the Global Times had warned earlier. Hu Zhiyong, a research fellow at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences and the Vice-Director and Secretary-General of China’s Central and South Asia Security Council, said that that “Sino-US trade is far superior, so Trump, being a practical businessman, considers China issues more important,
Hu also pointed out that trade relations between US and India was never balanced.
US would particpate in largest ever joint navy drill along with India and Japan in July. Hu doesn’t see it as a threat for China. The expert said Trump is not showing much interst in maintaining its alliance in the area. The future of any alliance is “unclear or worse” even as India and Japan remain very active. Moverover, Hu said, “All in all, China, as India’s neighbor, is always happy to see better US-India relations, because they could also benefit China.”
The reaction on Modi-Trump meet was dramatically different from China in Pakistan. Pakistan’s Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar on Tuesday said that Trump administration was “speaking India’s language”. Ahead of the meeting, US state department had designated Hizbul Mujahideen leader Syed Salahuddin as a global terrorist. Pakistan foreign office, however, called the move “completely unjustified”, Dawn.com reported. Nisar also said that Pakistan would keep supporting separatist activities in Kashmir.