NEW DELHI, July 2 (Xinhua) -- Sixty years after their birth, the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence remain an essential guideline for building international relations, says an Indian expert.
The five principles -- mutual respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, mutual non-aggression, mutual non-interference in each other's internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence -- are as important as before, T.C.A. Rangachari told Xinhua.
"In today's world, handling international relations according to the principles are increasingly important. Adhering to them is better than getting into conflicts," he added.
Stability, development and friendly cooperation remain important demands of people around the world, said Rangachari, director of the Academy of International Studies of Jamia Millia Islamia University in New Delhi.
He said he is confident that more countries would adhere to the principles as other options are not as appealing and comfortable as these principles.
"None of the countries involved in territorial disputes in Asia have said they want to solve the issue by force rather than negotiation," said the 66-year-old former Indian ambassador to France, Germany and Algeria.
"If we adhere to the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, we can resolve our disputes peacefully by promoting dialogue and using them as an instrument," he said.
However, the understanding of the principles should evolve along with the changing global politics and economics, and the priority should be put to the livelihood of the people and social development of developing countries, said the former diplomat.
"The definition of sovereignty is changing, especially in regional organizations like the European Union, where there is limitation to the exercise of sovereignty for greater cooperation," he said.
What is important today is not simply the demarcation of sovereignty,but how to exercise it to improve the life of people, he said.
Suggesting a "broader vision" for national sovereignty, he said a developing country like India needs first of all to solve its serious problems of over-population, poverty, inequality, poor education and health services.
"If the border issue with China is solved, can we say we have solved India's problems?" he asked.
The five principles first appeared in an agreement between China and India in April 1954 and were incorporated in a statement of the Asian-African Conference in Bandung, Indonesia, in 1955.