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India’s decision to seal border with Pakistan will upset ties, Chinese analysts

KARACHI: India’s latest decision to entirely seal its border with its neighbour Pakistan was ‘irrational’ and would certainly lead to a major setback in bilateral relations between the two countries, Chinese daily Global Times reported on Tuesday.

Earlier in October, India’s Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh claimed that the Modi government was planning to seal Pak-India border by the end of 2018 in December according to several Indian media reports.

Must Read: India to seal border with Pakistan by 2018, claims Rajnath Singh

Reports also suggested that India was inclined towards creating a border security grid, with guidelines to be framed with inputs from all stakeholders along the border.

However, several Chinese analysts in the Global Times report have rejected the Indian move on several grounds.


Certainly an ‘irrational’ decision

“India is making a very irrational decision, since no exhaustive investigation has been conducted after the Uri incident, and no evidence proves Pakistan is behind the attack,” Hu Zhiyong, a research fellow at the Institute of International Relations of the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times.

Hu added that a “completely sealed” border would further hinder the already scarce border trade and talks between the two countries.


Peace efforts will be at stake

Echoing Hu, Wang Dehua, Director of the Institute for Southern and Central Asian Studies at the Shanghai Municipal Centre for International Studies, told the Global Times that the sealed border would only disrupt peace efforts made by the two sides.

“The country’s decision reflects its Cold War mentality, and would only cause deeper hatred among residents living in Indian-and-Pakistan-controlled Kashmir,” said Hu.


China-Pak-India relations to suffer

Since Pakistan is China’s all-weather strategic partner, India’s decision would make China-Pakistan-India relations more complicated, Hu noted.

The Director of the Institute for Southern and Central Asian Studies added that a peaceful resolution of the Kashmir conflict is in the interest of China’s homeland security, especially its western regions.


Rising Pak-India tensions

Tensions between Pakistan and India spiked since New Delhi claimed it had launched “surgical strikes” on militant posts across the disputed border that divides the Kashmir region between the two countries.

Islamabad denied the strikes, saying two of its soldiers were killed in the cross-border firing.

Relations have been strained since gunmen raided an Indian army base in held Kashmir on September 18, killing 19 soldiers, the worst such attack in over a decade.

New Delhi blamed the attack on Pakistan saying militants from its soil attacked the base. However, Pakistan has denied the allegations.



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