Edited by Huiyao Wang and Lu Miao
Chapter 15: Perspectives, prospects and challenges of Panchsheel in Asia: the India–China context
This chapter discusses the famous five principles of Panchsheel – mutual respect for each other’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, non-aggression, non-intervention in others’ domestic affairs, mutual benefit and equality, and peaceful coexistence – that were first incorporated in the Sino-Indian Agreement on Tibet in April 1954. In succeeding years, the doctrine was adopted as a norm in the world community. It became a general principle of right conduct to which a community expects all its members to conform and that shapes the very structure of international relations. Alongside the five principles, various other codes of a similar nature can be found in the charters of such bodies as the United Nations, the Non-Aligned Movement, and the Organization of African Unity. But for India and China, these principles have remained more than a declaration. China elevated the five principles as the cornerstone of its foreign relations with all states. It continues to stress peaceful coexistence in current pronouncements on foreign policy. India, too, has made strenuous and successful attempts to have these principles accepted by the Non-Aligned Movement and incorporated as “basic principles of international law” through the Declaration on Friendly Relations passed by the UN General Assembly. This chapter treats the ongoing/on-off tension mode in India–China relations, which has continued for decades.
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