China chides India over new border posts
BEIJING (AP) — China’s Defense Ministry cautioned New Delhi on Thursday over Indian plans to construct 54 new border posts along an eastern stretch of their disputed frontier.
Spokesman Yang Yujun said China urged India to do more to maintain peace and stability in the area and “not to do things that may complicate the situation.”
The long-festering border dispute continues to bedevil relations between the giant Asian neighbors — armed with nuclear weapons and with 2.6 billion people between them — despite a recent warming of relations.
Suspicions date from a monthlong border war in 1962 that killed about 2,000 soldiers. That conflict ended in a standoff with each side accusing the other of occupying its territory.
As recently as September, Indian and Chinese troops faced off along the border, even as their leaders were promising to boost economic cooperation and substantially increase Chinese investment in India’s infrastructure at a rare meeting.
China claims about 90,000 square kilometers (35,000 square miles) of land in India’s northeastern state of Arunachal Pradesh, while India says China is occupying 38,000 square kilometers (15,000 square miles) of territory on the Aksai Chin plateau to the west.
China only acknowledges a dispute in the eastern section of the border and has refused to stamp Chinese visas inside the Indian passports of citizens from Arunachal Pradesh.
India also recently announced plans to build new roads inside the disputed area to keep up with China’s development of transport links and airstrips on its side of the line-of-control.