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India cautious as China sticks to its charge

Beijing reiterates that Indian troops had crossed border in the Sikkim region

Displaying caution, India on Thursday declined to respond to China’s accusation that Indian troops had crossed the India-China border in the Sikkim region. A Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson said the questions on China’s moves were important that demand time to deal with and refused to speak in detail for the time being.

“The issues that you are raising are important and I need time to do justice to them,” said spokesperson Gopal Baglay responding to the China-related issues raised by media persons at a news conference at the MEA.

 

Mr. Baglay said that due to an urgent appointment, he would have to leave without answering China-related questions. But he, however, indicated that a detailed briefing on China’s latest comments would be held soon.

The news conference was the first that the MEA held since Beijing began to issue a series of harsh statements regarding India since last weekend blaming Indian border troops of “illegally crossing into the Chinese territory.”

This accusation came within two days of China denying permission to Indian pilgrims to use the Nathu La pass for the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra. The denial has stalled this season’s pilgrimage which was to consist of more than two dozen groups.

Despite the MEA’s reluctance to be drawn into a war of words, Beijing reiterated on Thursday that the Indian troops had crossed the China-India boundary at the Sikkim section and demanded withdrawal of the Indian troops from what it claimed was China’s territory.

“Truth may be concealed for a while, but not forever. We once again urge the Indian side to abide by the existing boundary convention, respect China’s territorial sovereignty, and immediately bring the border troops that have crossed into China back to the Indian side of the boundary, so as not to worsen the situation,” said a spokesperson of China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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Printable version | Feb 27, 2020 9:08:33 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/india-cautious-as-china-sticks-to-its-charge/article19180866.ece

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