ISLAMABAD - China yesterday supported Pakistan’s  position on India’s illegal action on August 5 last year when it merged the occupied territory into its union in violation of the international laws.

A Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson says, China “follows closely the situation in the Kashmir region. Our position is consistent and clear. This issue is a dispute left over from history between Pakistan and India that is an objective fact established by the UN Charter, Security Council’s resolutions and bilateral agreement between Pakistan and India.”

He added: “Any unilateral change to the status quo is illegal and invalid. This issue should be properly resolved peacefully through dialogue and consultation between the parties concerned.” The Chinese Foreign Ministry’s spokesperson Wang Wenbin said Pakistan and India are neighbours that cannot be moved away.

“Peaceful co-existence serves the fundamental interest of both and the common aspiration of the international community. China hopes that they can properly handle differences through dialogue, improves relations and jointly safeguard peace, stability and development of both the countries and the wider region,” he said.

He said, any unilateral change to the status quo in IOJK was illegal and invalid, and emphasized that the issue should be properly resolved peacefully through dialogue and consultation between the parties concerned.

To a query about the issuance of a new map by Pakistan showing a part of Kashmir as disputed territory, the spokesperson said he had already stated China’s position on Kashmir.

China has been a staunch supporter of Pakistan on the Kashmir issue. In the joint statement issued after the visit of President Dr Arif Alvi to China this March, the Kashmir was also raised during the visit and China underscored that it was paying close attention to the current situation and reiterated that the Kashmir issue was a dispute left from history, and should be properly and peacefully resolved based on the UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreement. China also opposed any unilateral actions that complicate the situation.

In July, the foreign ministers Pakistan and China agreed to jointly defend regional stability.

Separately, yesterday, Foreign Minister Qureshi and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Indonesia Retno L. P. Marsudi held a telephonic conversation. Indonesia is the President of the United Nations Security Council for the month of August.

Referring to his letter to the President of the Council, the Foreign Minister underscored that his request to the Security Council to meet reflected the urgency in addressing the deteriorating human rights situation in IOJ&K, India’s blatant attempt to change the demography of the occupied territory in violation of the UNSC resolutions and international law, and increased ceasefire violations from the Indian side cumulatively pose threat to regional and international peace and security.

The Foreign Minister underscored that the intensified ceasefire violations and enhanced tensions necessitated strengthening of the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan.

He stated that the situation required cognizance of the Security Council and steps to prevent escalation and peaceful resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute.

He expressed the hope that the Council would shoulder its responsibility for maintenance of international peace and security in an effective manner.