Taking a tough stand on the ongoing stand off between India and China, Beijing on Monday asked Delhi to ‘immediately’ withdraw its troops from the controversial Doklam plateau in Sikkim.

Chinese Defence Ministry spokesperson, Wu Qian while addressing the media said that the Indian Army has crossed over into their territory and should retract immediately.

“Strongly call on India to immediately withdraw frontier defence personnel from across border,” said Wu Qian.

Speaking further, Qian said that the peace in the entire region depends if there is peace along the border areas of both the countries. “It’s our pre-condition” to begin talks to resolve the matter, he added

The development comes days after, Minister of External Affairs (MEA) Sushma Swaraj asserted that the international community is taking note of the situation and feels that China is aggressive towards a small country like Bhutan and foreign countries are with India on the matter.

“Foreign countries are with us. They feel that China is being aggressive with a small country like Bhutan. Bhutan has protested, including in writing. All the countries feel India’s stand is right and the law is with us,” said Swaraj said in the Parliament.

The faceoff between India and China heightened after reports of Chinese army involved in the construction of roads along the controversial Doklam border surfaced in June this year.

China has been long pressing the statements demanding the withdrawal of Indian troops and accusing India of trespassing in Doklam.

Earlier Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Gang said, “China has pointed out many times that the illegal trespass of Indian border troops of the mutually recognised border line is different in nature from the frictions in the undefined sections of the boundary.

Citing 1890 convention, China said, “According to the 1890 convention, the Sikkim section has been recognised by both China and India and this convention is effective for both countries.

China also created a blockade for Kailash and Manasarovar Yatra pilgrims from India who take the Nathu La through Sikkim during their pilgrimage.

The disputed land — Doklam — has long been claimed by the Chinese as their territory and they are now allegedly planning to build a road there. Both Bhutan and India have objected to China over the attempt to build a road in Doklam citing security concerns.

Bhutan recognises Doklam as its area while China claims it as part of its Donglang region. Doka La is the Indian name for the region.

First Published | 24 July 2017 12:24 PM
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