Ahead of Chinese President XI Jinping’s India visit, China has changed its stance on the Kashmir issue. China, who has been supporting and defending Pakistan at various international platforms including the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and United Nations Security Council (UNSC) over Kashmir, Terrorism and other issues, on Tuesday called Kashmir a bilateral issue for India and Pakistan. 

China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang confirmed Chinese President XI Jinping’s India visit. However, he didn’t mention any particular date for the visit but said that the visit schedule would be shared between Beijing and New Delhi soon. He said both the countries have a tradition for high-level exchanges in several fields like trade, energy, and other resources. He added that after last year’s Wuhan informal meet between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President XI Jinping, relations between India and China have strengthened.

Notably, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has also arrived in China to XI Jinping. During the press conference, replying to a question of China’s stand on Kashmir, Geng said India and Pakistan should resolve the Kashmir issue through talks. He added that China’s position on this sensitive issue is clear and consistent.

However, China’s stance on Kashmir after India scrapped the Article 370 was different earlier. On August 6, the Chinese foreign ministry had opposed India’s move to end special status for Jammu and Kashmir and convert the state into 2 Union territories.

Later, China had tried to intervene in India and Pakistan’s bilateral issue saying both the countries should resolve the issue peacefully and should work to bring peace and stability in the region.

During Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi’s China visit, Chinese officials had said Kashmir conflict should be resolved on the UN Charter, relevant UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreement. At that time too, India had made it clear that Kashmir is India’s internal matter there’s no need of a mediator.

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