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NEW DELHI: The Ministry of External Affairs on Friday termed reports about an alleged Chinese build-up near the Doklam plateau as “mischievous.”
“The status quo prevails at Doklam. Any report to the contrary is mischievous,” said MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar during his weekly media briefing.
“This news report refers to alleged Chinese build-up well within China. There have been no new developments at the face-off site and its vicinity since the August 28 disengagement between the two countries,” Kumar added, in response to recent media reports about Chinese troop build-up a few kilometres from the Doklam plateau.
When asked if Chinese President Xi Jinping’s order to the People’s Liberation Army to be “combat-ready” could be seen as a “provocative” statement in the context of the Doklam standoff, the spokesperson said that India hopes the “direction and policies set by Congress of the Communist Party contribute to peace and stability in the region.”
Kumar also touched upon the Japanese foreign minister’s remarks suggesting a quadrilateral dialogue between the US, India, Japan and Australia, saying that India was open to working on an “agenda relevant to us.”
The spokesperson briefed the media about the mob attack on two Swiss tourists in Fatehpuri Sikri, saying that the ministry attaches alot of importance “to quick redressal.”
“The ministry attaches alot of importance to quick redressal. Our response is to bring immediate relief to the victims,” he said.
In the briefing, Kumar also talked about the ministry’s new ‘Ask the Spokesperson’ intiative that goes live today.
“The idea is to give a chance to the lay man, someone who doesn’t understand the nuances of foreign policy, and reply to them in very simple terms,” he said.
As part of the programme, he will take 8-10 questions every session, and answer them in a webcast.
The sessions will be organised once every 2-3 months.