- NEW DELHI (Reuters) - The Beijing Military Academy has recommended China
redeploy medium- and long-range missiles against India following New Delhi's
nuclear tests last year, Indian newspapers said on Thursday.
- "One important recommendation, which
China has put into action, is to redeploy medium- and long-range missiles
against India to 'ensure nuclear balance in Chinese favor'," The Pioneer
said in a front-page article.
- The Times of India, quoting defense sources
in New Delhi, said the military academy paper recommended China seek Western
sanctions against India, led by the United States, and seek to isolate
India on the international stage.
- "The document says that China should
penalize India for its alleged 'anti-China' stance and highlight 'India's
hegemonistic designs'," it said.
- India's ministries of defense and foreign
affairs said they had no immediate comment on the reports.
- China said it had not changed its policies
in the wake of the tests.
- "There have been no changes on the
position of the Chinese government," Foreign Ministry spokesman Sun
Yuxi told reporters.
- "We hope and are willing to making
efforts to develop friendly relations with India on the basis of the five
principles of peaceful coexistence."
- The Indian reports came as Chinese state
media said Beijing had urged India to adopt a more long-term approach
to their relations and stamp out "undesirable disturbances" affecting
- During a meeting with visiting members
of India's opposition Congress party, Vice President Hu Jintao said relations
between the two neighbors had progressed "along a normal track,"
but "progress has suffered undesirable disturbances."
- India's Pioneer said that despite strong
pressure from both China and the United States, India would go ahead with
the development of longer-range versions of its Agni ballistic missile.
- Agni, part of India's indigenous missile
development program, was last tested in February 1994. It is seen as a
potential deterrent to nuclear-armed China.
- The Hindu nationalist-led government,
which stunned the world with India's first nuclear tests for nearly a
quarter of a century shortly after taking power, cleared plans for development
of Agni's second phase last year.
- The nuclear tests jolted relations between
India and China, setting back years of painstaking diplomacy and reviving
memories of a brief border war between the two nations in 1962.
- India has said its tests were not aimed
at any particular country. But in a letter to U.S. President Bill Clinton
to explain why they were carried out, Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee
had cited an "atmosphere of distrust" in relations with China.
- New Delhi has also accused China of providing
its arch-rival, Pakistan, with missile technology, a charge Beijing denies.
- The Pioneer said the Beijing Military
Academy paper recommended an intensification of efforts "to sow discord
between India and its neighbors."
- Uday Bhaskar, deputy director of the
Institute for Defense Studies and Analyses in New Delhi, said he was treating
the report of the military academy recommendations with caution.
- "It's a very logical development.
When you have a neighboring country doing nuclear tests you obviously
have a review," he said. "But I would be a little more prudent
and try and see the report."