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China reaffirms claim over Indian-state of Arunachal Pradesh

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China has reaffirmed its territorial claim over Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh by destroying 30,000 world maps printed in the country for not mentioning Arunachal Pradesh as part of its territory.

The destroyed maps also did not mention Taiwan as part of Chinese territory.

Like Taiwan, China claims the northeastern Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh as part of South Tibet.

India says the State of Arunachal Pradesh is its integral and inalienable part and Indian leaders visit Arunachal Pradesh from time to time, as they visit other parts of the country.

The two countries have so far held 21 rounds of talks to resolve the border dispute covering 3,488-km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC).

China also routinely objects to Indian leaders visiting Arunachal Pradesh to highlight its stand.

On February 9, 2019, China expressed its opposition to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Arunachal Pradesh where he laid the foundation stone for a new airport.

Beijing's position on the issue has been "consistent and clear", foreign-ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said in a statement.

"The Chinese government has never recognized the so-called Arunachal Pradesh and is firmly opposed to the Indian leader's visit to the eastern section of the Sino-Indian border."

India should "take into consideration the two countries' relations, respect Chinese interests and concerns, cherish the momentum of improving relations, and not take any actions that will complicate the border dispute," she said.

Modi laid the foundation stone for a new airport development at Hollongi in the region's Parum Pare district during a two-day tour of northeast India.

New Delhi considers Arunachal Pradesh as an Indian state, but Beijing claims a large part of it as South Tibet. The region was at the centre of the fighting during the 1962 war between the two Asian giants.

Modi said that his government had put the region "on a fast track to development" and was planning the development of a number of infrastructure projects in the region, including the airport, and road and rail facilities.

Once operational, Hollongi Airport, which is being developed on a greenfield site, will have a 2.2-km (1.4-mile) runway and provide direct flights to several major Indian cities. The project has been in the pipeline since 2007 but controversy and debate over site selection have hampered its progress.

Tensions between Delhi and Beijing have been on the rise in Arunachal Pradesh since late December 2018 when Chinese construction workers were spotted building roads in its Upper Siang district. The workers pulled back when Indian troops moved in.

Although military leaders from the two sides held a meeting to debate the issue, according to a report by India Today, the dispute has sparked concerns that they might be heading for a repeat of their 73-day stand-off on the Doklam plateau in the summer of 2017.

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Author and journalist. Author of Islamic Pakistan: Illusions & Reality; Islam in the Post-Cold War Era; Islam & Modernism; Islam & Muslims in the Post-9/11 America. Currently working as free lance journalist. Executive Editor of American (more...)
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