China chides Japan for calling Arunachal Indian territory

Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida speaks during a press conference in Tokyo. (Photo courtesy: AFP)
Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida speaks during a press conference in Tokyo. (Photo courtesy: AFP)

(, Jan20, 2015) – China has strongly demanded that Japan clarify its position on the status of Arunachal Pradesh after the latter’s Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida had referred to it as Indian territory, reported China’s official Jan 19. China called on Japan to “speak and act cautiously on China-India territory disputes”, the report quoted China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei as saying at a daily news briefing Jan 19.

The report claimed, “Arunachal Pradesh, which includes three areas in Tibet Autonomous Region – Monyul, Loyul and Lower Tsayul, is currently under Indian illegal occupation.”

The report said the Japanese Foreign Minister had said over the weekend that his government was ready to invest in infrastructure projects in India’s landlocked northeast; that while clarifying that the projects would not be in the state of Arunachal Pradesh, he had referred to it as Indian territory.

China had lodged serious representations over such remarks and demanded Japan clarify its stance to mitigate any negative effects, the report quoted Hong as having said at the briefing.

He has said the remarks went against Japan’s publicly stated official position on the issue. “Japan has made a clear public statement that it takes no position on, and will not get involved in, territorial disputes between China and India,” Hong was quoted as saying.

The report referred to a hitherto unknown “traditional customary boundary between China and India” and said the Chinese government’s stance on the areas located between it and what it called the illegal “Mcmahon Line” had always been Chinese territory.

Japan and China are locked in their own bitter territorial dispute concerning sovereignty over the uninhabited Senakaku/Diaoyu islands which had been under Japanese control since 1895. China had acquiesced to Japanese sovereignty over the islands in the East China Sea until the 1970s. Many consider China to have begun raising claim over the islands after a 1968 academic survey undertaken by United Nations Economic Council for Asia and the Far East which found possible oil reserves in the area.

China has never ruled Arunachal Pradesh. It stakes it claim on the ground that the territory is part of Tibet, which India accepts is part of China. Tibet conceded the territory to British India in a 1914 treaty which established the “Mcmahon Line”.


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