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India rejects any change under China’s new border security law

(TibetanReview.net, Oct27’21) – India expressed concern Oct 27 at China’s recently adopted “Land Border Law” and said Beijing should not use it as a “pretext” to alter the already tense situation along the border areas, reported thepint.com Oct 27.

“China’s unilateral decision to bring about a legislation which can have implications on our existing bilateral arrangements on border management as well as on the boundary question is of concern to us,” Arindam Bagchi, Spokesperson, Ministry of External Affairs, has said.

“We also expect that China will avoid undertaking action under the pretext of this law which could unilaterally alter the situation in the India-China border areas,” he has added.

Bagchi has also said such a unilateral move will have “no bearing on the arrangements that both sides have already reached earlier, whether it is on the Boundary Question or for maintaining peace and tranquility along the LAC in India-China Border areas.”

The “Land Border Law of the People’s Republic of China” was adopted by the Standing Committee of China’s 13th National People’s Congress on Oct 23.

There are five main border agreements that India and China have signed, affirming their commitment to maintain peace and tranquility in the border areas. These are the 1993 Agreement on Maintenance of Peace and Tranquility along the Line of Actual Control in the India-China Border Areas; the 1996 Agreement on Confidence Building Measures in the Military Field along the LAC; the 2005 Protocol on Modalities for the Implementation of the Confidence-Building Measures in the Military Field along the LAC; the 2012 Agreement on the Establishment of a Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on India-China Border Affairs; and the 2013 Border Defence Cooperation Agreement.

India has also made it clear that China’s new law does not in any way give “legitimacy to the so-called China Pakistan ‘Boundary Agreement’ of 1963 which the Government of India has consistently maintained is an illegal and invalid agreement”.

Meant to “safeguard national sovereignty, security and territorial integrity” while promoting “good neighbourly friendship and exchanges and cooperation” with the countries it shares land borders with, China’s new border security law says, among many other things, that the Chinese government will take “effective measures to strengthen border defence construction, support the economic and social development of the border and open up to the outside world, promote the action of strengthening the border and enriching the people of the border, improve the level of border public services and infrastructure construction, improve the production and living conditions of the border, and encourage and support border residents in border production and life, and promote the coordinated development of border defence construction and border economy and society”. 

The People’s Republic of China shares a 22,100-km land border with 14 of its neighbours. But it has outstanding disputes only with India and Bhutan, the report noted.

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