Beijing: Defence Minister of India, Manohar Parrikar, will visit China later this month to strengthen military ties despite strains in bilateral relations over Beijing’s move to block India’s attempts in the UN to clamp a ban on Pakistan-based group JeM chief Masood Azhar.
Parrikar, the first Indian defence minister to visit China since 2013, will pay a three-day visit starting from April 18 during which he is expected to hold talks with top Chinese political and defence leaders, official sources here said.
His predecessor A K Antony visited China in 2013. No agreements were expected during Parrikar’s visit which is being regarded as bilateral visit aimed at firming up ties, officials said.
Parrikar’s visit also comes as concerns were rising in India about China’s move to block its bid to have JeM chief Azhar designated as terrorist by the UN in the aftermath of the attack on an air base in Pathankot in January.