China issues position document on Indian border troop trespass

Jerome Frank
August 3, 2017

China on Wednesday laid out its position on India's incursion into Chinese territory in the Himalayas.

India has rubbished China's claim that the number of troops have been reduced at Doklam. India has said it warned China the road construction would have serious security implications.

Citing the 1890 border agreement between China and Britain, the ministry said that India's actions, besides being a major encroachment of Chinese territory, posed a challenge to peace and stability in the region and normal global border.

However, by sticking to its statement on June 30, New Delhi has implied that there was no notification from the Chinese side.Challenging the Indian position that China, through its unilateral action, has made a significant change in the status quo, Beijing alleged that New Delhi has been trying to change the status quo in Sikkim "time and again... which poses a grave security threat to China". It lies at the junction between China, the Indian state of Sikkim and Bhutan.

"This makes it fundamentally different from past frictions between the border troops of the two sides in areas with undelimited boundary", the statement highlighted.

China and Bhutan both claim Doklam even as the two countries along with India do not agree where their borders meet. Responding officially to the Chinese statement, the Ministry of External Affairs said, "India's position on this issue and related facts have been articulated in our press statement of June 30".

Meanwhile, reiterating its demand that India must withdraw its troops from the border along Sikkim, China on Wednesday said it had informed India in advance about its road building activity in Doka La on the border.

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In a 15-page document, the Chinese foreign ministry also said the number of Indian troops in Doklam since the beginning of the crisis in mid-June had fallen from 270 to 40 by the end of July. As a third party, India has no right to interfere in or impede the boundary talks between China and Bhutan, still less the right to make territorial claims on Bhutan's behalf.

Doval and Jiechi are special representatives of India and China, respectively, for the border talks between the two countries.

Hardware has been moved simultaneously by road and rail by China's western theatre command, which oversees the restive regions of Xinjiang and Tibet, and handles, among others, border issues with India, media reports have said.

Du Youkang, director of the Centre for South Asia Studies at Fudan University, said dialogue between the two sides had continued throughout the dispute and neither wanted the row to escalate.

"No country should ever underestimate the resolve of the Chinese government and people to defend China's territorial sovereignty".

Foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said the paper was meant to "further explain to the worldwide community the truth about Indian army's intrusion, and fully state the position of the Chinese government".

This show of strength is being projected by Beijing as a warning to India by China to back off from its objection to China constructing a road at the Doklam tri-junction.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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