China sees rising India as ‘rival’; wants to curb its ties with US

Vastavam web: China perceives a rising India as a “rival” and wants to constrain its strategic partnership with the US, its allies, and with other democracies, the State Department said in a report, emphasising that Beijing intends to displace America as the world’s foremost power. Coming ahead of the transition of power from Donald Trump’s administration to President-elect Joe Biden’s administration after the November 3 US presidential election, the detailed policy document highlights that China is undermining the security, autonomy and economic interests of many nations in the region.

“China is undermining the security, autonomy, and economic interests of many others in the region such as member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), including those in the vital Mekong Region, as well as the nations of the Pacific Islands,” the report added. The 70-page report states that awareness has been growing in the US – and in nations around the world – that the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has triggered a new era of great-power competition. The CCP aims not merely at preeminence within the established world order an order that is grounded in free and sovereign nation-states, flows from the universal principles on which America was founded, and advances US national interests but to fundamentally revise world order, placing the People’s Republic of China (PRC) at the center and serving Beijing’s authoritarian goals and hegemonic ambitions.

China, it said, seeks to diminish US influence by fostering a sense in the region’s nations that China’s dominance is inevitable. “Prime targets include US treaty-based allies Japan, South Korea, Australia, Thailand, and the Philippines as well as emerging strategic partners such as India, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Taiwan,” it said. The People’s Liberation Army, the report said, recently provoked skirmishes along its disputed border with India, which killed dozens on both sides, and remains in a tense standoff with India’s military.

Indian and Chinese troops have been locked in a bitter standoff in several areas along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh since May 5. The situation deteriorated after the June 15 Galwan Valley clashes in which 20 Indian Army personnel were killed and an unconfirmed number of Chinese soldiers died. “The Trump administration achieved a fundamental break with conventional wisdom. It concluded that the CCP’s resolute conduct and self-professed goals require the US and other countries to revise assumptions and develop a new strategic doctrine to address the primacy and magnitude of the China challenge,” according to the document. The report also highlighted the outbreak of contagious coronavirus from China’s Wuhan city. The disease has so far infected 56,178, 674 people and killed 1,348,348 others across the world. The US is the worst affected country.