China says no ‘hyperlink’ between stranded Indian ship crew and strained ties, blames quarantine measures


China’s remarks got here after the MEA on Thursday stated two cargo vessels with 39 Indians on board have been on anchorage in Chinese waters as they weren’t allowed to unload their cargo

Beijing: China stated on Friday that there was no “link” between the scenario of Indian crew on two stranded ships at Chinese ports and its strained relations with India and Australia.

The External Affairs Ministry on Thursday stated in New Delhi that two cargo vessels with a complete of 39 Indians on board have been on anchorage in Chinese waters as they weren’t allowed to unload their cargo although another ships have managed to take action.

“There is a considerable amount of stress on the crew members on account of this unprecedented situation,” External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava stated. Srivastava stated bulk cargo vessel MV Jag Anand is on anchorage close to Jingtang port in Hebei province of China since 13 June and it has 23 Indian sailors.

Another vessel, MV Anastasia with 16 Indian nationals as its crew, is on anchorage close to Caofeidian port in China since 20 September, ready for discharge of its cargo, he stated at a media briefing.

“Our Embassy in Beijing has been in constant touch with provincial and central government authorities in China, requesting that the ships be allowed to dock and/or the crew be allowed to be changed,” he stated.

Asked about India’s concern referring to the Indian crew members of the ships and whether or not China’s resolution on this difficulty has associated to the present scenario between India, China and Australia, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin informed a media briefing on Friday “we stated repeatedly that China has clear stipulations on quarantine measures”.

“Concerning this, China has stayed in close communication with the Indian side and responding to their requests as well as providing necessary assistance for them,” he stated.

“As far as I understand, China allows the crew to change while meeting certain quarantine conditions. But this Jingtang port is not on the list for such crew changes, he said. Wang, however, did not refer to the 16 crew members of Caofeidian port.

“For extra specifics, chances are you’ll discuss with the competent and native authorities,” he said.

“As as to if this has something to do with the bilateral relations, I do not see any hyperlink,” he added.

The relations between India and China were under stress over the current military standoff at Eastern Ladakh. The ties between Australia and China in the past few months nose-dived after Canberra barred Chinese telecom giant Huawei Technologies from its national 5G network over national security concerns.

China also resented Canberra’s push for an international inquiry into the origins of the coronavirus in April. Reports from Australia say China has been restricting a number of Australian exports, including coal.

China last month blamed the freight forwarder of Jag Anand ship for the impasse, saying he is not letting the ship to leave.

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