China warns India ties may be hit if Dalai Lama visits Arunachal

Tibetan spiritual leader The Dalai Lama meets Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu in New Delhi in this October 9, 2016 photo.  

China on Friday warned India that bilateral ties may suffer “damage” and affect peace and stability of the border areas if New Delhi allowed Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama to visit Arunachal Pradesh, which Beijing claims is part of southern Tibet.

“We are seriously concerned about the relevant information,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang told a media briefing here replying to a question about reports that India has granted permission to the religious leader to visit Arunachal Pradesh at the invitation of Chief Minister Pema Khandu.

‘Our line is clear’

“China’s position on the eastern section of China India border is consistent and clear. The Dalai clique is engaged in anti-China separatist activity and has very disgraceful behaviour on issues relating to China-India boundary question,” Mr. Lu said.

The Indian side is well aware of the severity of the Dalai Lama issue as well as the sensitivity of the China-India boundary question, he has said.

“Under such circumstances India’s invitation to the Dalai Lama for activity in the disputed areas between China and India will only damage peace, stability of the border areas as well as the bilateral relationship between China and India,” Mr. Lu said.

Honour your word on Tibet

“We require the Indian side to honour the political commitment to Tibet-related issues and abide by the bilateral consensus on boundary question,” the spokesman said.

India also should “refrain from taking any action that may complicate the issue, do not provide any platform for anti-China separatist activities by the 14th Dalai Lama,” he said. “Only by doing so can we maintain sound and steady growth of the bilateral relations,” he added.

Asked about assertions by External Affairs spokesperson Vikas Swarup that the Dalai Lama has visited the state in the past, Mr. Lu said “making one mistake does not mean that you can make another mistake.”

‘Ties will be at peril’

“As I just said, India’s invitation to the Dalai Lama for activity in the disputed area between China and India is like providing a platform for anti-China separatist activities. It does no good to peace and tranquility in the border areas as well as the development of China-India relations,” he said.

China considers Arunachal Pradesh as part of southern Tibet and routinely objects to visits by the Dalai Lama, Indian leaders as well as foreign dignitaries. The border dispute covers the 3,488-km long Line of Actual Control (LAC).

India asserts that the dispute covered Aksai Chin area which was occupied by China during the 1962 war.

On October 24, China took exception to the visit by Richard Verma, the United States envoy in India, to Arunachal Pradesh.

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Printable version | Nov 30, 2021 1:10:25 PM |

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