Narendra Modi in Washington, DC: China steps up attack against India on multiple grounds

As Prime Minister Narendra Modi was preparing to meet Donald and Melania Trump at the White House, China on Monday launched a scathing attack on the Indian Army accusing it of stopping the construction of a road in what it called its "sovereign territory" in the Sikkim section of the India-China border.

 Narendra Modi in Washington, DC: China steps up attack against India on multiple grounds

Representational image. PTI

Chinese defence ministry spokesman in an official statement further said that the Indian Army’s act has "seriously damaged" border’s peace and tranquility.

The statement came out hours after news of Chinese troops transgressing into the Indian side in Sikkim and jostling with the Indian troops were reported by the media. The face-off between the soldiers of the two armies started in the first week of June and continued for ten days at Doka La general area in Sikkim.

After the scuffle, the report stated, the Chinese troops entered the Indian territory and destroyed two makeshift bunkers of the Indian Army.

According to PTI, the incident was apparently the reason why China didn’t allow 47 Indian pilgrims from crossing through Nathu La border in Sikkim into Tibet to visit Kailash and Manasarovar last week.

Concerned about drones sale

Meanwhile, in a Hindustan Times article, a senior Chinese disarmament strategist said that China is more concerned about the sale of US surveillance drones to India, which will help New Delhi to keep a closer watch over the strategically important Indian Ocean.

The strategist Han Hua further said that China is "concerned" about the growing US-India strategic partnership ever since the civil nuclear deal was signed between the two countries.

“After the Bush administration opened the door to India, people in Washington have been talking about India’s role in checking China’s rise,” Hua told Hindustan Times.

Criticism of India-Afghanistan air corridor

Chinese media has also come down heavily on the India-Afghanistan dedicated air corridor which bypasses Pakistan, and called India as being “stubborn” in its geo-political thinking.

In its report the state-run Global Times asked that the already launched and the proposed routes between India, Afghanistan and Iran “This begs a question: Will India bypass Pakistan to develop trade with Afghanistan and other Central Asian countries?”

"All such connectivity efforts have not only signalled India’s desire to more actively participate in regional economic development, but have also highlighted the country’s stubborn geopolitical thinking,” the article adds, “India has always been pushing back against the Belt and Road (B&R) initiative, so its intention to create its own connectivity network appears to be a strategy to counterbalance the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor."

China’s ‘shuttle diplomacy’ between Pakistan, Afghanistan

Pakistan has always accused India of meddling in Afghanistan and creating a rift between the two neighbouring countries.

Perhaps to help out its "all-weather friend", China has come forward to ease tensions between Pakistan and Afghanistan this time.

China will conduct the shuttle diplomacy between Afghanistan and Pakistan, Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi said during his visit to both the countries, according to Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang.

Yi visited Islamabad and Kabul on 24 and 25 June.

During the visit, the two countries agreed to establish the bilateral crisis management mechanism, Geng said.

The main targets for the visit are to implement the consensus between the state leaders and in addition the requirement of Afghanistan and Pakistan as directed by Chinese leaders, he said.

"We will conduct shuttle diplomacy to help improve relations between the two countries within our capacity and also to promote the peace process in Afghanistan," Geng said.

With inputs from PTI

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Updated Date: Jun 27, 2017 17:29:26 IST