China refused to issue a visa to the General Officer Commanding in Chief in Jammu and Kashmir, Lt. Gen. BS Jaswal.
The commander is responsible for Indian army operations in the Muslim-majority disputed region.
Kashmir has witnessed protests against Indian rule triggered by recent killings blamed on government forces. Sixty-four people have lost their lives in two months of violence. The New Delhi government's refusal to send a word of apology over the slayings and the reluctance shown by the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to order an end to shootings have added to the anger of protestors.
This is a very significant position for the Chinese government to take, and will be interpreted as such from the many Middle Eastern countries with which China does business.
Unfortunately, this position, however, will do nothing to relieve the problems of China's Muslim Uighur minority living in and around Xinjiang province in Western China, which continues to be a flashpoint for violence just as Kashmir is for India.