India and Pakistan should resolve their differences over the Kashmir issue peacefully through dialogue and consultation, China said on Friday on the third anniversary of the revocation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.

In August 2019, the Indian government bifurcated Jammu and Kashmir into Union territories and abrogated the provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution which accorded special status to the erstwhile state.

The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill was introduced in the Rajya Sabha on August 5, 2019, and passed on the same day. The Lok Sabha cleared it the next day.

Asked for her comment on the third anniversary of the revocation of Article 370 by India, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told a media briefing that the issue should be resolved peacefully by India and Pakistan through dialogue.

“On the issue of Kashmir, China’s position is clear and consistent. This is an issue leftover from history between India and Pakistan. And this is also a shared view of the international community,” she told a Pakistani journalist here.

“We stated back then that parties concerned need to exercise restraint and prudence. In particular, parties should avoid taking actions that unilaterally change the status quo or escalate tensions,” Hua said.

“We call on both India and Pakistan to peacefully resolve the dispute through dialogue and consultation,” she said.

India has previously emphasized that matters related to the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir are entirely the internal affairs of India.

“Other countries including China have no locus standing to comment. They should note that India refrains from the public judgment of their internal issues,” the Ministry of External Affairs had said in March this year.

The ties between India and Pakistan were nosedived after New Delhi abrogated Article 370 of the Constitution.

India’s decision evoked strong reactions from Pakistan, which downgraded diplomatic ties and expelled the Indian envoy.

India has repeatedly told Pakistan that Jammu and Kashmir “was, is and shall forever” remain an integral part of the country. India has said it desires normal neighborly relations with Pakistan in an environment free of terror, hostility, and violence.