No mountain is high enough to stop China and India having a strong relationship, as long as both sides strive to build trust instead of fighting one another, Chinaâ€™s foreign minister said on Thursday.
â€œDespite certain tests and difficulties, Sino-Indian relations continue to grow,â€ Wang Yi told a press briefing on the sidelines of the ongoing National Peopleâ€™s Congress in Beijing, the annual session of Chinaâ€™s ceremonial parliament.
His comments came after a turbulent period for the two Asian giants, and just days after Indiaâ€™s Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman accused China of increasing its military presence on the Doklam plateau in the Himalayas.
Sitharaman said on Monday that recent satellite images showed Beijing had built helipads, and deployed tanks and missiles in the disputed region. Similar images released in the middle of last year showed that New Delhi had also increased its military presence in the area with the deployment of more warplanes.
Since their 73-day military stand-off in Doklam last summer, tensions between China and India have been further stoked by the presidential election campaigns in the Maldives, the rise to power of a pro-China government in Nepal, and Beijingâ€™s port-buying activities in the Indian Ocean.
Despite the slew of disputes, Wang dismissed claims that ties between the two countries were deteriorating.
â€œChina has upheld its legitimate rights and interests while taking care to preserve the relationship,â€ he said, adding that the two sides should free themselves of prejudices and replace suspicion with trust.
â€œThe Chinese dragon and the Indian elephant must not fight with each other, but dance with each other,â€ Wang said.
â€œWith political trust, not even the Himalayas can stop us from having friendly exchanges.â€