China escalates tension, accuses Indian Army of “betrayal”

The verbal spat between China and India today escalated as Beijing said the Indian Army's action to stop Chinese troops from constructing a road in an area near Sikkim is a "betrayal" of the stance taken by successive Indian governments and India must withdraw from the region.
China escalates tension, accuses Indian Army of “betrayal”
File Photo

The verbal spat between China and India today escalated as Beijing said the Indian Army's action to stop Chinese troops from constructing a road in an area near Sikkim is a "betrayal" of the stance taken by successive Indian governments and India must withdraw from the region.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said that the Sino-India border in the Sikkim sector is well demarcated.

"By entering into the Chinese territory and obstructing Chinese troops' normal activities, India violated the existing convention on the boundary and basic principle of the international law and 

obstructed peace and stability of the boundary area," Geng told reporters in an extensive briefing.

"We require the Indian side to withdraw their troops to the Indian side of the boundary and create conditions for the restoration of peace and stability in the relevant areas."

China and India have been engaged in a standoff in the Doka La area near the Bhutan tri-junction for almost a month in what has been the longest such impasse between the two armies since 1962, when the two countries fought a brief war.

Sikkim, which became a part of India in May 1976, is the only state with a demarcated border with China. The lines are based on an 1898 treaty signed with China. Doka La is the Indian name for the region which Bhutan recognises as Dokalam, while China claims it as part of its Donglang region.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng said India needs to observe the treaty and pull back its troops immediately.

He dismissed Defence Minister Arun Jaitley's remarks that India of 2017 is different from what it was during the war with the communist nation in 1962, saying China too is different and will take "all necessary measures" to safeguard its territorial sovereignty.

"To some extent he is right in saying that India in 2017 is different from the India in 1962, just like China is also different," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said, referring to Indian Defence Minister Arun Jaitley.

Last week, after China warned India to learn from its military debacle of 1962, Jaitley had said that the India of 2017 was not the India of 1962. 

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