New Delhi: Chinese Defence Minister Wei Fenghe on Sunday began his one day visit to Kathmandu, the highest-level visit after the visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping. Wei, who came with around 20-member delegation was welcomed by the Nepali Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa on his arrival.
“My visit is aimed at enhancing mutual military assistance and strengthening the existing ties between the two countries. Ties between China and Nepal are strong and I am here to take this relationship to a new height.I am confident about having a result-oriented visit”, the Chinese minister was quoted as saying by the local media present at the airport.
During his visit, Wei will call on Nepal President Bidya Devi Bhandari, PM KP Sharma Oli and Army Chief General Purna Chandra Thapa.
The visit is significant even as Chinese influence has been seen in Nepalese politics. Chinese envoy to Nepal Hou Yanqi has been meeting with key stakeholders in ruling Nepal communist party, including PM Oli as the party faces a split.
The ruling Nepal Communist Party faces a division with PM Oli threatening to walk away from the alliance with Prachanda.
The high profile visit comes days after India’s foreign secretary Harsh Shringla visit to the country. Shringla’s visit was the third high-level visit from an Indian diplomat to Nepal after the visit of the Indian Army chief and Intelligence chief.
While Chinese influence in Kathmandu has grown, Nepal’s ties with India has deteriorated. The new Nepalese map that showed Indian territories as its own has not helped the cause.
India had strongly reacted to the new map issued by Nepal PM KP Sharma Oli, calling it “unjustified cartographic assertion”.