China’s military warns India its restraint in border standoff has a limit — China in unrelenting media barrage against India

Beijing ramping up media campaign to pressure India into withdrawing its troops from Chinese territory

By Catherine Wong
South China Morning Post

Friday, August 4, 2017, 12:48pm

China’s defence and foreign ministry released statements late on Thursday on the border stand-off with India, saying restraint has a limit and urging Indian troops to withdraw from Chinese territory.

The statements came as both countries’ foreign ministers are attending Asean regional bloc meetings in the Philippines over the weekend.

The defence ministry said India should not underestimate the resolve of China’s military to protect its territory.

“The Indian side should give up the illusion of its delaying tactics as no country should underestimate Chinese forces’ confidence and capability to safeguard peace and their resolve and willpower to defend national sovereignty, security and development interests,” Ren Guoqiang, a spokesman for the ministry was quoted as saying.

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The foreign ministry said New Delhi’s decision to send troops into a disputed area on the remote Doklam Plateau – where China, India and Bhutan meet – was “clearly not for peace”.

“It has already been more than a month since the incident and India is still not only illegally remaining on Chinese territory, it is also repairing roads in the rear, stocking up supplies, massing a large number of armed personnel,” the foreign ministry statement said.

The warning came as Chinese state media aired footage of a live firing drill in Tibet on Thursday.

Watch: CCTV airs footage of live fire drill in Tibet

India says its troop movements were a response to Chinese road building in the disputed area, which it viewed as a provocation.

The Chinese foreign ministry said China had previously notified India “out of kindness” on May 18 and June 8 through the border affairs working mechanism about plans to carry out roadworks in the area.

“The Indian side didn’t make any response to the Chinese side through any channel for over one month. Instead, it flagrantly dispatched armed forces carrying equipment to illegally cross the boundary to obstruct China’s road building,” spokesman Geng Shuang was quoted as saying.

 A file picture of China-India border crossing at Nathu La. Photo: AFP

China has stepped up a publicity campaign against India since Wednesday, first by issuing a paper detailing its position on the current stand-off.

It said there were still 40 Indian troop in Chinese territory, although the number has dropped from a peak of 400.

The official army newspaper the PLA Daily followed with extensive coverage of the dispute, including a commentary accusing India of concocting “all sorts of excuses” over what it called illegal entry by Indian personnel into Chinese territory.

A commentary by the state-run news agency Xinhua on Thursday night also warned that India should not “misinterpret China’s restraint”.

“China has always prioritised diplomacy before resorting to military moves,” the commentary said, but the ball was now in India’s court.

China’s chargé d’affaires in India, Liu Jinsong, told Indian journalists in a pressing briefing on Thursday that India must withdraw its troops or face “serious consequences”, The Hindu newspaper reported.

Liu said China had released it paper on Wednesday to inform the international community, including India, of the “rights and wrongs” and realities of the border dispute, the embassy said.

China hopes India will take the document seriously, said Liu.

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Rajesh Basrur, international relations professor at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University, said President Xi Jinping might be trying to keep the pressure on India until a five-yearly change in China’s top leadership at a congress in Beijing this autumn.

“Xi is trying to ensure solidarity at the congress by keeping the pot boiling. After that, he can afford to defuse tensions,” Basrur said.

India’s external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj said on Thursday that war was not a solution and India would resolve the border standoff with China through dialogue, the Hindustan Times reported.

“[Restraint] is very important to resolve the issue. If there is no restraint, it provokes the other side,” Swaraj is quoted as saying.

China staged a huge parade at its largest military base in Inner Mongolia last weekend to emphasise its combat readiness, while state media has been promoting President Xi Jinping’s strongman image.

Additional reporting by Kinling Lo


Doklam deadlock: India and China will constantly challenge each other, get used to it



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One Response to “China’s military warns India its restraint in border standoff has a limit — China in unrelenting media barrage against India”

  1. daveyone1 Says:

    Reblogged this on World Peace Forum.

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