India and China should resolve Doklam peacefully: British envoy
Calling upon India and China to peacefully resolve the Doklam stand-off, British High Commissioner to India Dominic Asquith on Thursday ruled out any intervention on the part of his country as neither party has sought its services.
"We think, we still think, we always thought, and continue to think, it should be resolved peacefully. And so we look forward to these two countries - India and China - resolving the issue. They are trying to do."
Asquith said the two countries would get opportunities to discuss the issue in the next few weeks.
"A few opportunities are coming up in the next few weeks. I hope they make progress. We will support and encourage them," he said.
The High Commissioner said he had not held any discussions on the Doklam issue with Chinese Ambassador to India Luo Zhaohui.
"No. it's not my business. I meet my opposite number from China, who is in Delhi, just as I meet the other envoys. But I did not talk to him on this (issue), because it is not my role, as a third party," he said.
Asquith answered in the negative when asked whether his country could play a role as a third party to work out a solution to the problem.
"I think we have been asked, neither by the Chinese side, nor the Indian side, to be involved. So since we have not been asked, it means we will not impose our services. If neither party wants us to intervene, we won't intervene."
About the security scenario in South Asia against the backdrop of the India-Pakistan tensions, Asquith said his country considered both nations as friends, but pointed out Britain has for long been standing by New Delhi on the issue of fighting terrorism.
"We have been standing shoulder to shoulder with India on the issue of fighting terrorism for a long long time. You notice, the first country (British Prime Minister Theresa) May visited outside the EU is India. So this is a very important relationship which we are going to take forward," he asserted.
However, Asquith was categorical that Britain would not intervene in the ongoing dispute between India and Pakistan.
"India and Pakistan both the countries are our friends. We value the relationship with them very deeply.We are not going to intervene between them just as we won't intervene between India and China on the issue of Doklam. Both the countries are very important for us," he added.
Emphasising the utmost importance of securing the data in a digital economy, he said they would be working more closely with India in order to protect the data in cyber space within the next couple of years.
"Digital economy is to make sure that people feel confident that their personal data is protected. So the cyber security is very important. we have been working on that very closely with India. We will go even more close in the next year or two.
"We would be collaborating with India in order to secure data that is out there in the cyber space. That is the most sensible step to take. If you are going to be a digital economy you have to protect the data," he said. - IANS