Following the recent release of a contentious map that generated tensions within the surrounding region, Chinese President Xi Jinping is reportedly considering skipping the G20 summit, slated to occur in the Indian capital of New Delhi next month. According to a report by Reuters, this decision has been suggested.
The report quoted sources familiar with the matter in India and China who stated that Premier Li Qiang is expected to represent Beijing at the September 9-10 meeting.
Xi pulling out of the summit comes days after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced he was not travelling to India to attend the meet in person. He called Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and conveyed that Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will represent Russian interests on the global platform.
It was anticipated that Xi might meet with US President Joe Biden, who has confirmed his attendance at the summit. Some reports claimed that Xi might square up against PM Modi yet again, after holding a rare conversation on the sidelines of the BRICS meeting in Johannesburg, South Africa, earlier this month.
During the meeting, the two leaders discussed reducing tensions in the bilateral relationship that soured after clashes along their Himalayan frontier in 2020 left 24 soldiers dead.
Xi planning to skip the summit is likely to steer the summit in a productive direction. Earlier, geopolitical hawks stated that Beijing releasing the distorted map where India’s Arunachal Pradesh, Aksai Chin as well as Taiwan and major portions of the South China Sea were shown as Chinese territories, could have divided the G20 summit.
Since the release of the controversial map, India, Malaysia and the Philippines have come out with strong objections, calling out China for its hyper-expansionist tendencies.