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Ties severely damaged, says China

“As far as the boundary issue is concerned, I have also maintained that we don’t share our boundary with China, but we share our boundary with Tibet,” he observed.

Analysts say that the statement can be interpreted as questioning the “one-China” principle.

An op-ed in the state-run tabloid Global Times accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of seemingly taking “a different stance on the Dalai issue, raising public engagements with the monk and challenging Beijing’s bottom line.”

Rejecting India’s position that the visit was purely religious in nature, Ms. Hua said that no one believed that the Dalai Lama was visiting a “disputed region” for religious reasons alone.

“We demand the Indian side immediately stop wrong actions, not hype up sensitive issues and take concrete steps to safeguard growth of India-China relations,” she observed.

Sections of the Chinese state media have linked the Dalai Lama’s visit as India’s comeback to Beijing’s refusal so far to include Masood Azhar, the head of the Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad group in the UN ban list, as well as obstruction to New Delhi’s membership to the Nuclear Suppliers Group. When asked for its reaction, the Ministry of External Affairs in Delhi referred to its statement a day earlier that “no political colour be ascribed to his visits to States of India.”

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