China’s peaceful diplomacy & game theory | By Dr Mehmood Ul Hassan Khan


China’s peaceful diplomacy & game theory

THE Chinese peaceful diplomacy has become “icon” of diplomacy, dialogue and development in the world. The Chinese facilitated “Saudi-Iran” peace agreement has now become “beacon” of hope for the international community to bury the hatched and live peacefully, ignoring and overcoming all psychological, social, political, economic and geo-strategic “hangovers” of the past. Now the Game Theory has new chessboard of power politics, new players, new alliances and new iron triangular in the region. Ultimately, new oil order is in the making which would change the socio-economic, geopolitical and geostrategic dimensions of the regional as well as international energy supplies chains in the days to come.

Afterwards, the intensity of vertical and horizontal diplomatic “re-approachment”, serious political engagements and consultation of all the regional stakeholders ranging from Yemen, Syria and UAE and gearing of mutual understanding between military/secret agencies of the two countries vividly reflected “drastic” change in the socio-economic, geopolitical and geostrategic landscapes of the GCC, Middle East, MENA and even South East Asia. Reciprocal invitations of the head of the states have further strengthened the prospects of regional peace, stability and interfaith harmony.

Most recently, interestingly China’s foreign minister made calls to his Israeli and Palestinian counterparts showing readiness of China to help facilitate peace talks between the two sides, in its latest effort at mediation in the region. It is another peaceful initiation of the Chinese government to lessen prevailing tension between the two sides. According to the Foreign Ministry in separate phone calls to the two officials Qin Gang expressed China’s concern over intensifying tension between Israel and Palestinians and its support for a resumption of peace talks. It seems that China has emerged as a diplomatic equalizer and player in the Middle East which is good omen for the region and its people alike.

According to the official statement while talking to Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen the Chinese Foreign Minister Qin stressed the need to have peaceful negotiations for resolving the escalating tension. Qin quoted Saudi Arabia-Iran peace agreement that has set a good example of overcoming differences through dialogue. He told Cohen that Beijing encourages Israel and the Palestinians to show political courage and take steps to resume peace talks. “China is willing to provide convenience for this he further added. Unfortunately, Israel and the Palestinians have not held substantive peace talks on ending the century-long conflict in over a decade. The incumbent Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government is committed to expanding settlements in the occupied West Bank which most of the international community considers illegal and an obstacle to durable peace and several of his key allies are staunchly opposed to the creation of an independent Palestinian state.

Unfortunately, during the holy month of Ramadan violence in Israel and the West Bank increased, touched off by an Israeli police raid on Jerusalem’s most sensitive holy site, the compound home to the Al-Aqsa mosque. The Israeli military struck sites linked to the Palestinian group Hamas in southern Lebanon and the Gaza Strip after militants in the two territories fired rocket salvos at Israel. The mosque sits on a contested hilltop revered as the third-holiest site in Islam and the holiest site in Judaism.

Moreover, the landscape of greater Eurasian Region is also badly needed the Chinese “magical” diplomatic assistance to further strengthen the prospects of greater regional connectivity, immense socio-economic integration, peace and security. The emergence of middle corridors, middle players along with recreation of “alternative route” all highlight the importance of new Game Theory in the region facilitating conflict resolution under the “flagship” of China. In this regard, the early initiation and completion of “Zangezur Corridor” a mega project of regional and trans-regional connectivity would be a “game changer” for Azerbaijan’s greater regional connectivity and trans-regional trade & commerce activities on a regular basis with easiest, smoothest and shortest trade route connecting all the regional countries in the days to come.  It would also be mutually beneficial for Armenia which badly requires regional economic integration. If agrees, Beijing peaceful diplomatic means would be a “healing therapy” for both the conflicting parties in the days to come.

In this regard, it is suggested that ideally policy makers of both states should follow as holistic and comprehensive “economic diplomacy” at “bilateral” and “trilateral” levels to convenience the countries to come out of their self-defined geographical limitations, psychological barriers, political constrains and jointly work for the construction of Zangezur Corridor for achieving immense socio-economic integration and greater regional connectivity. The policy makers should also positively think to seek the “Chinese magic hand” to overcome prevailing hurdles to start the construction of Zangezur Corridor as soon as possible. Interestingly, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) also urged Iran to return its three islands it had illegally occupied for the last five decades. The UAE’s Minister of State for International Cooperation said Iran’s occupation of the three islands was a violation of her country’s sovereignty.

The UAE renewed its demand for an end to Iran’s occupation of the three UAE islands namely Greater Truth, Lesser Truth and Abu Musa. Unfortunately, Iran seized the three islands in November 1971 shortly after British forces were pulled out. The islands are all located in the Strait of Hurmuz between the Arabian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. In this regard it is suggested that both countries should also seek the “Chinese mediation” to resolve the pending issue of three islands.

To conclude, the world is passing through drastic changes and same is the case of the GCC and MENA. Obviously, the Chinese peaceful diplomacy has set new parameters of regional peace, stability and harmony compelling all the conflicting parties to give peace a chance to promote peaceful co-existence and promote multiculturalism. The most recently concluded Saudi-Iran peace agreement has coined new Game Theory, comprising of new power-players, new avenue and new parameters of socio-economic, geopolitical and geostrategic cooperation in the region which is indeed a good omen for the region as well as the global peace. The Xi holistic and comprehensive initiatives mainly community with shared prosperity, Global Development, Global Security and Global Civilizational have stolen the show and pushed back the Western manipulated power politics and chronic designs of imperialism and hegemony in the region successfully replacing with the spirits of integration, unity, harmony, peace, stability, security and last but not least development.

—The writer is Executive Director, Centre for South Asia & International Studies, Islamabad, regional expert China, BRI & CPEC & senior analyst, world affairs, Pakistan Observer.

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