United Nations transport conference in Beijing: Technical problem interrupts Indian diplomat’s microphone
At a United Nations transport conference in Beijing last week, a “technical problem” temporarily silenced the participating Indian diplomat’s microphone when delivering the speech on BRI.
This conference was organized by China in Beijing under the aegis of the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA).
India expressed strong opposition to the China-led Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) at a United Nations transport conference in Beijing last week despite a “technical problem”, which temporarily silenced the participating Indian diplomat’s microphone when delivering the speech.
Priyanka Sohoni was the Indian representative from the political section of the Indian embassy in Beijing.
Sohoni was explaining New Delhi’s opposition to the BRI, the China-led intercontinental connectivity project when her microphone went silent at the second UN Global Sustainable Transport Conference.
Sohoni questioned the principles behind BRI. She also pointed out that expansion and strengthening of physical connectivity is an integral part of India’s economic and diplomatic initiatives.
“There have been some references to the BRI at this conference. Here, I wish to say that as far as China’s BRI is concerned, we are uniquely affected by it. Its inclusion of the so-called CPEC as a flagship project impinges on India’s sovereignty,” Sohoni said.
She continued, “No country can support an initiative that ignores its core concerns of sovereignty and territorial integrity,” she said without naming either China or Pakistan.
She further added, “This aside, there are also larger issues regarding how connectivity initiatives should be pursued. We are of the firm belief that connectivity initiatives must be based on universally recognized international norms. They must follow principles of openness, transparency, and financial responsibility.”
It was at this point that her microphone stopped working, making it impossible for Chinese and international delegates to hear her.
Minutes before Sohoni spoke, a Pakistan diplomat called the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) a “game-changer” for the region in his speech. The Pakistani diplomat went all praises on the BRI, and its flagship project CPEC.
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