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Tuesday, May 30, 2023

China criticizes Indian home minister’s visit to ‘southern Tibet’

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(TibetanReview.net, Apr10’23) – China has said Apr 10 that it was firmly opposed to a visit being undertaken by India’s home minister to the border state of Arunachal Pradesh. It has maintained that the visit of Amit Shah, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s right-hand man, violated China’s territorial sovereignty.

China claims that the state is part of its territory on the basis of its claim over Tibet. It occupied the state’s Tawang area, which it especially covets, in the 1962 war launched by it but withdrew after a month.

India recognizes Tibet as an autonomous region of China but insists Tawang belongs to it on the basis of a treaty signed in 1914 between British India, Nationalist (Kuomintang) China, and Tibet.

The two countries never had a shared border until China annexed Tibet in 1951 and they signed a trade agreement in 1954.

China also previously criticized visits to the state by top Indian leaders as well as by the Dalai Lama, Tibet’s erstwhile temporal head and spiritual leader, who has lived in exile in the country since 1959.

China recently gave its own “standardized” names to 11 more places in Arunachal Pradesh in a third such exercise since 2017.

“Zangnan is China’s territory,” China’s foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin has said in response to a question on the visit by the Indian Home Minister Amit Shah. “Zangnan”, or “southern Tibet”, is itself a new Chinese name just like the name “Xizang” it has given to Tibet.

“The Indian official’s visit to Zangnan violates China’s territorial sovereignty, and is not conducive to the peace and tranquility of the border situation,” the voanews.com Apr 10 quoted Wang as saying.

The Indian home minister is in the state to launch a “Vibrant Villages Programme” as a part of the Modi government’s efforts to connect all the border villages in states adjoining Chinese ruled Tibet.

The launch on Apr 10 took place at Kibithoo town. A section of forest clearing north of this town in the states’ Anjaw district was among the 11 places renamed by China a week ago.


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