China urges India to pull back its troops to resolve border standoff

by Dwayne Torres July 25, 2017, 0:09
China urges India to pull back its troops to resolve border standoff

The Chinese defence ministry on Monday (24 July) issued a new warning to neighbour India amid ongoing border standoff that began about two months ago over a disputed area near the China-Bhutan border. Calling Indian overtures for a peaceful negotiation as an "illusory thinking", China seems to be in no mood to douse the stand-off very soon or quickly, Chinese defence ministry spokesperson has said that India must not try to take the People's Liberation Army (PLA) lightly. "It is easier to shake a mountain than the PLA", Wu said.

India responded to the call by sending troops last month to evict the Chinese army construction party from the Doklam Plateau.

In the wake of an Army face-off and chill in ties with India over Dokalam stand-off, the Chinese media outlets have been issuing provoking statements.

Defense ministry spokesman Colonel Wu Qian reiterated China's demand that Indian troops pull back from the Doklam Plateau, an area also claimed by Indian ally Bhutan where Chinese teams had been building a road toward India's border. "India should take practical measures to correct its wrongdoing, stop provocation and jointly safeguard peace in the border regions", said Wu. He added that China's ability to defend its territory and sovereignty has "constantly strengthened".

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Indian analysts said China appeared to be trying to pre-empt settlement negotiations by establishing a Chinese presence in Doklam. "China will safeguard its territorial sovereignty and security interests at all costs", W said.

India also warned China that the road was a "serious security concern" because it would give China access to the Siliguri Corridor, also known as the 'Chicken's Neck, ' a narrow stretch of land linking India's northeastern states to the rest of the country, NDTV reported earlier in July.

On the eve of a scheduled visit by National Security Advisor Ajit Doval to Beijing for a BRICS meet, China has again stepped up the rhetoric by stating that the Indian troops will "not be allowed" to stay on in the Donglang area for a long haul. Though China has accused India of "illegal transgress" and Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj of "lies", it has also acknowledged the use of diplomatic contacts to resolve the conflict. The two sides have held 19 rounds of boundary talks to resolve their differences.

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