In a dramatic turn of events, US President Donald Trump on Wednesday offered to mediate between India and China to ease border standoff between the two countries. In a tweet, Trump said he was “ready, willing and able to mediate” between the two sides. He tweeted: “We have informed both India and China that the United States is ready, willing and able to mediate or arbitrate their now raging border dispute. Thank you!”
However, both India and China have not responded to the offer. Indian Army has matched the force build-up in the Ladakh region in response to the Chinese army build-up along the Line of Actual Control (LAC). Violent clashes between Indian Army jawans and PLA soldiers early this month had left soldiers on both sides injured. The Indian government made it clear that it would not allow any change in the status quo on the LAC and that it would respond to China’s actions with “strength and restraint”.
Trump’s remarks came a week after his administration’s outgoing point person for South Asia, Alice Wells, strongly backed the Indian position in the border row and said such disputes are a “reminder of the threat posed by China”.
Wells, the outgoing head of the state department’s South and Central Asia bureau, said like-minded nations such as the US, India, Australia and Asean states have rallied together in the face of China’s “provocations and disturbing behaviour”.
She had said: “The flare-ups on the border, I think, are a reminder that Chinese aggression is not always just rhetorical. And so whether it’s in the South China Sea or whether it’s along the border with India, we continue to see provocations and disturbing behaviour by China that raises questions about how China seeks to use its growing power.”
She added, “What we want to see is an international system that provides benefit to everyone and not a system in which there is suzerainty to China. And so I think in this instance, the border disputes are a reminder of the threat posed by China.”