Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale to Push India's Demand for Listing of JeM Chief Masood Azhar as Global Terrorist During China Visit
Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale (Photo credits: ANI/File)

New Delhi, April 20: India’s foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale will hold talks with top Chinese officials, including foreign minister Wang Yi during his two-day visit to China. Gokhale during his visit will discuss various issues including the listing of Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist. The foreign secretary’s two-day visit will start on Sunday. Here’s How China Blocked the Listing of Masood Azhar at the UNSC.

Gokhale’s visit to China is taking place amid close engagement between India and China following the February 14 Pulawama terror attack carried out by a JeM terrorist in which 40 CRPF personnel were martyred. He will be meeting Yi on April 22. Apart from the Chinese foreign minister, Gokhale will also be meeting vice foreign minister Kong Xuanyou. UNSC Statement Condemns Pulwama Terror Attack; Names Jaish, Skips Masood Azhar.

Meanwhile, China on Wednesday dismissed reports that the US, UK and France have served it an ultimatum until April 23 to lift its "technical hold" on designating Pakistan-based JeM chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist but claimed that the vexed issue is "moving towards settlement".

Gokhale is visiting China, just days ahead of the Belt and Road Forum (BRF). China is holding BRF to showcase its trillion-dollar Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in which the USD 60 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is a flagship project. India has protested to China over the CPEC as it is being laid through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK). Masood Azhar to be Blacklisted? Pakistan Asks China to Let UN Ban JeM Chief, But Sets Preconditions For India.

While India is expected to skip the BRF meeting being held here from April 25-27, informed sources said there was no invitation from China to the leadership of India or at the Ministerial level to attend the event. According to the Hindustan Times report, Gokhale is likely to discuss India and China’s stands on key global issues at international forums.

(With inputs from PTI)