China's Global Times published (June 6) an article by Ding Gang, Senior Editor with the Party paper 'People's Daily' and currently also a Senior Fellow with the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies at Renmin University of China, asserting that Nepal's "strategic position" is the cause for increased US interest on Nepal in its Indo-Pacific Strategy. It said that though David J Ranz, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for the State Department's Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, said on May 14 in Kathmandu that Nepal would benefit from the Indo-Pacific Strategy, "to this day, the US has not described its Indo-Pacific Strategy as an initiative to target or contain China, but neither has the US stated specific plans to drive economic growth in this region, making the strategy seem unrealistic." Saying that "Nepal's public opinion is "generally positive about Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's victory in the re-election" and they hope his policies can be continued, the article claimed "China's development has made it impossible for any force to make Nepal a pawn in strategic arrangements to counterbalance China's influence."  It asserted "The China- proposed Belt and Road Initiative has brought the country unprecedented opportunities by linking it to its surrounding areas and the world. Nepal will no longer be closed and poor, but will be an essential hub to connect East, South and Central Asia." Stating that "the era of Western expansion starting from 500 years ago" along with the march of British colonists into Nepal, "with China's Tibet as their next target" is gone forever, it said "China's policy of creating an amicable and prosperous neighborhood will offer people of Nepal and other South Asian countries more opportunities to improve their living standards".

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