August 17, 2017
Contact: Prof. Surya Subedi, Ph. D.
Global Policy Forum for Nepal (GPFN), was established as an independent and non-partisan academic entity to aid Nepal formulate and implement sound policies towards balanced socio-economic development and external relations. GPFN is increasingly concerned with the re-ignition of territorial dispute between China and India in the tri-junction Doklam area along the Bhutanese border. At a time when heightened tensions span an arc stretching from the Middle East, through the Himalayan frontiers to the South China Seas and beyond to the Korean Peninsula, GPFN calls for a united effort to diminish the emotional rhetoric from both sides that could so easily spark a full-fledged conflict.
GPFN urges the government of Nepal to remain entirely neutral towards its two friendly neighbors, to continue following the Non-Aligned foreign policy resolutely and to ensure that Nepal’s territory, including its air space, is not collaterally used in the event of conflict. Nepal should derive strength from its neutrality and pursue a proactive role in helping negotiate a peaceful settlement, recognizing that the current dispute is merely part of the age-old unresolved India-China disagreements along the border that stretch across the Himalayas. Nepal can utilize its convening power, and offer its neutral and convenient location as a platform to negotiate an end to the bi-lateral dispute between India and China.
GPFN also urges fellow Nepali people, civil society, media and diaspora members to get engaged in encouraging the government of Nepal to continue adopting the principles of Panchasheel and non-alignment towards ensuring continued stability and peace in this Himalayan region, without which the only casualties will be the growth and prosperity of the people in the region.
GPFN is concerned that in this atmosphere of mistrust, today’s minor border skirmishes can quickly turn into a major crisis for all parties concerned.
GPFN sincerely hopes that China and India, both being respected seats of ancient wisdom and paragons of successful modernization, can amicably de-escalate the situation through peaceful dialogue. Nepal’s neighbours are encouraged to dwell on their mutual interests including the prosperity they share through increased bilateral trade rather than on their differences and minor misunderstandings.