India on Friday expressed "deep concern" over China's plans to construct a road in the Doklam area in Sikkim sector, saying that such a move "represent a significant change of status quo with security implications for India". Chinese foreign ministry on Friday defended construction work by Chinese troops who are building a road in Doklam, the disputed area.
China has again referred to its version of history to buttress its claims over a disputed area disputed area, which is also claimed by Bhutan.
New Delhi and Beijing in 2012 reached an agreement that the tri-junction boundary points between India, China and third countries will be finalized in consultation with the concerned countries. India has hit out after Bhutan slammed China earlier, further causing more embarrassment to Beijing.
The Chinese military rejected as "extremely irresponsible" Army chief General Bipin Rawat's remarks that India is ready for a two-and-a-half front war, asking him to "stop clamouring for war".
It asked New Delhi to withdraw troops, reiterating it as a precondition to settle an ongoing stand-off in India's Sikkim sector, where the two countries share a little over 200 km of border. Bhutan lodged a protest with China on June 20.
Indian media said China had stopped pilgrims crossing into Tibet to visit a mountain revered as the home of the Hindu god Shiva.
The agreement also states that the two sides would refrain from taking unilateral action, or use force, to change the status quo of the boundary, it said. If the Chinese gain control of Donglang, they gain the ability to essentially cut off India's access to the northeastern states in case of a conflict, defence experts said.
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Ren noted that China is committed to developing bilateral relations with India, but it will also firmly defend its legitimate rights and interests.
It has also charged India with acting at the behest of Bhutan, which also lays claim to Donglong.
Mr Namgyel's comments came after Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said on Wednesday there was no dispute that Doklam belonged to China. India is committed to working with China to find peaceful resolution of all issues in the border areas through dialogue. "The pictures clearly show that Indian soldiers and vehicles have overstepped the crest which is defined as the boundary and entered Chinese territory", he said.
Specific mention in the Modi-Trump joint statement of India and the U.S. expanding "engagements on shared maritime objectives" and reiteration of their joint call for "respecting freedom of navigation" in the Indo-Pacific have not gone down well in China since these moves impinge on Chinese military objectives.
The China-Indian boundary in Sikkim has been delineated by historical treaties, and the Indian government has repeatedly confirmed in writing since their country gained independence, acknowledging they had no objection to the China-Indian boundary line at the Sikkim section, Ren said.
According to NNI, China said its troops were building a road in its own territory and not on land that belonged to Bhutan, Hindustan Times reported on Thursday.