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September 17, 2020

Experts call for use of evolving situation to regional uplift

Islamabad

September 17, 2020

Islamabad : Experts at a webinar on ‘Dynamics of bilateral relations amongst the South Asian states: a new order in the making?’ called for better use of evolving situation to uplift the region out of poverty and reinvigorate the regional forum, the SAARC.

The webinar was organised by Institute of Regional Studies (IRS) here Wednesday. Aarish Ullah Khan from IRS moderated the session.

Dr Hu Shisheng, Director, Institute for South Asian Studies at the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, said that US has waged a cold war against China in which India was playing a proxy role. All efforts are towards isolating Beijing from the rest of the world, he said adding that even, the Trump administration is conniving to alienate the Communist Party from the Chinese citizens through propaganda.

He said the existing scenario, followed by Sino-Indian border clash, epitomises the two striking strategic orders in making in the region where China is at the one side, and the US and its allies on the other hand.

Dr Hu observed that the future of bilateral relations with the New Delhi will remain unstable as both China and India failed to deal with the border issue in a mutually agreed manner.

Dr Khadga KC, Head of the Department of International Relations and Diplomacy, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, Nepal, said that his country has always followed One-China policy. Being a landlocked country, Nepal had to rely on India for trade and transit and faced terrible blockades at the hands of New Delhi. He continued saying that Nepal always tried to downsize its asymmetric interdependence with New Delhi. Now, with the transit treaty with China in 2016, we have access to four seaports and three dry ports, he said. In the evolving regional order, Nepal aspires to be more open up and have enhanced cooperation with all South Asian states, he said.

Prof Shahab Enam Khan from Bangladesh called for the resumption of Confidence Building Measures between Pakistan and India. He said that the normalisation between the two countries is the key to enable the SAARC to perform its due function/

Rabilal Dhakal, Royal Thimphu College, Bhutan, Shakti De Silva, Department of International Relations, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka, and Dr Shaheen Akhtar, National Defence University, Islamabad, also spoke on the occasion.