Days after placing a technical hold on India’s demand to designate Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist, China on Sunday said that it understands India’s concerns and are optimistic that the matter will be resolved, news agency ANI reported. “Regarding Masood Azhar we fully understand and we fully believe this matter. We understand India’s concerns and are optimistic this matter will be resolved,” China’s Ambassador to India Luo Zhaohui told ANI.
“After Wuhan summit, last year, the two-way cooperation is on the right track, on a fast track. We are satisfied with this cooperation, optimistic about the future,” Zhaohui added. India aggressively pushed for blacklisting the Jaish chief after the deadly Pulwama terror attack in which 40 CRPF personnel were killed.
New Delhi had launched a diplomatic outreach with New Delhi dialling top leaders across the world to secure their support in the UNSC. The Indian Express reported that New Delhi, in an effort to build international pressure, is talking to its major partners to ensure Azhar is included in their national lists of terrorists and JeM on their terrorist groups’ list.
For the fourth time in 10 years, China last week blocked a proposal in the UNSC, at the behest of Pakistan, to list the Jaish chief as a global terrorist. Moved by the US, UK, France and Germany, the proposal had been co-sponsored by a record 13 countries — Poland, Belgium, Italy, Bangladesh, Maldives, Bhutan, Equatorial Guinea, Japan and Australia. India’s proposal, put forward in February 2016 after the Pathankot attack, to designate Azhar as a global terrorist under the 1267 regime has been blocked four times by China, most recently in January 2017.
The move is being seen as an indication that China’s relationship with Pakistan is based on providing international protection for ISI proxies like Jaish, who in return provide China with insurance against terrorist attacks on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor infrastructure and the thousands of Chinese working on them. The CPEC project has been targeted by Baloch separatists as well as the Pakistani Taliban, who have claimed to be protesting China’s treatment of its Muslim Uyghur minority in eastern Xinjiang. Pakistan has attempted to reassure Beijing on the security of CPEC.