(RightWing.org) – India and China have shared economic and cultural ties for generations. The two have also been in conflict with one another. In December 2022, a skirmish broke out between the two countries along a 2,100-mile stretch of disputed border. The battle in the Galwan Valley left at least 24 people dead.
While the two continue to fight over the border, the US has been trying to court India for years. Former Presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump formed friendly relations with the country in the hopes of having one more country on their side in the Indo-Pacific region to counter the Chinese. President Joe Biden is also handling his relations with the nation with care, and recently the Indian prime minister visited the US Congress.
On Thursday, June 22, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke before a joint session of Congress. During his speech, he told lawmakers that his country wants to see a “free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific” region. Unfortunately, that isn’t possible right now because there are “dark clouds of coercion and confrontation” casting “their shadow” in the region.
Modi went on to tell Congress what India’s objectives are for the region. He said he hoped that all of the nations, “small and large, being free and fearless in their choices,” won’t be suffocated by debt as they move toward progress.
The prime minister’s remark about the debt was another thinly veiled attack on the Chinese Communist Party, which offers massive loans to nations to complete infrastructure projects. However, the loans are often unmanageable for small nations, allowing China to have an upper hand and force the countries into worse deals after they aren’t able to pay.
Modi also made another dig at China’s persistent attempts to seize control of the South China Sea, despite them having no legitimate claim to the areas beyond their territory as laid out by the Law of the Sea. The prime minister said he sees a future of “secure seas […] free from domination and anchored in” international law.
China has aggressively tried to take control of the entire Indo-Pacific region in recent years. In May, an extensive report by the Economic Times discussed the issues in the region and how China is essentially trying to steal parts of India by just staking claims to their land.
India has repeatedly slammed the Chinese government for its plans to expand into territory that doesn’t belong to them. China has also been in conflict with the governments of the Philippines, Australia, Malaysia, and other countries in the region. Their aggressive tactics have won them very few friends. Modi, for one, appears tired of the communist country’s behavior.
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