China, In­dia find mid­dle road in bor­der con­fronta­tion

The Star Early Edition - - OPINION & ANALYSIS -

SIN­GA­PORE: In­dia and China can man­age the dif­fer­ences that may arise from time to time over their con­tested bor­der, In­dia’s For­eign Sec­re­tary S Jais­hankar said yes­ter­day, com­ment­ing on re­cent ten­sion sparked by Chi­nese road-build­ing.

Ac­cord­ing to the Chi­nese in­ter­pre­ta­tion of events, early last month In­dian guards crossed into China’s Donglang re­gion and ob­structed work on a road on a plateau ad­join­ing the moun­tain­ous In­dian state of Sikkim.

Troops from both sides con­fronted each other close to a val­ley con­trolled by China that sep­a­rates In­dia from Bhutan – a close In­dian ally – and gives China ac­cess to the so-called Chicken’s Neck, a thin strip of land that con­nects In­dia to its re­mote north-east­ern re­gions.

De­liv­er­ing a lec­ture in Sin­ga­pore, Jais­hankar said In­dian Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi and China’s Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping reached con­sen­sus on two points at a meet­ing last month on the side­lines of a re­gional sum­mit in As­tana, Kaza­khstan. The two neigh­bours must not al­low their dif­fer­ences to be­come dis­putes, and should en­sure their re­la­tions were a fac­tor of sta­bil­ity amid global un­cer­tainty, Jais­hankar said.

“It is a long bor­der. No part of the bor­der has been agreed upon. It is likely that from time to time there’ll be dif­fer­ences,” he added. – Reuters

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