Never Acknowledged Arunachal's Existence: China Amid Intrusion Report


China claims Arunachal Pradesh is part of South Tibet. Of the 3,488 km-long border that India shares with China, 1,126 falls in Arunachal Pradesh.

Last year, it took 73 days for India and China to resolve the Doklam standoff. (Representational)

Story Highlights

  • Media report said Chinese troops intruded 200 metres into India
  • Chinese troops reportedly left construction equipment behind
  • China claims Arunachal Pradesh is part of South Tibet
Beijing: China today said it had "never acknowledged" the existence of Arunachal Pradesh as it denied knowledge about a report that its troops intruded into the Indian side of the border in the frontier state last month.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang's remarks came after a media report said that Chinese troops intruded into Arunachal Pradesh for about 200 metres close to a village in upper Siang district.

"First of all, on the border issue, our position is clear and consistent. We never acknowledged the existence of so called Arunachal Pradesh," Geng Shuang told a media briefing. "For the specific situation you mentioned, I am not aware of it," he said.

China claims Arunachal Pradesh is part of South Tibet. Of the 3,488 km-long border that India shares with China, 1,126 falls in Arunachal Pradesh.

According to the report, Chinese troops who crossed over into Arunchal Pradesh with construction machinery last month were stopped by Indian soldiers. The Chinese troops reportedly left the construction equipment behind.

"I want to mention that between China and India, there is a well-developed mechanism for border-related affairs. Through this mechanism, China and India could manage the border affairs. Maintaining peace and stability at the border suits both China and India," he said.

Asked whether there was another stand-off between the two countries, similar to the one in Doklam last year, the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said the "standoff which happened last year has been resolved properly".

The Chinese intrusion in Arunachal Pradesh took place around the same time National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi held the 20th round of border talks in New Delhi on December 22, the report said.

"Both sides made clear that the two countries will work together for the continuous improvement of China-India ties. The two sides will jointly maintain peace, stability of the border areas," Geng Shuang said on the outcome of the latest border talks.

The Doklam standoff began on June 16 after troops of the People's Liberation Army began building a road in the area. The Doklam Plateau is claimed by both Beijing and Bhutan as their territory. India backs Bhutan's claim. Indian soldiers had stopped the Chinese army from constructing a new road on the remote Doklam Plateau in mid-June, saying it would give China access to a strategically crucial narrow strip of land or "Chicken's Neck" that links it to its northeastern states.

China had retaliated, insisting that it has every right to build roads on its territory but later the two countries agreed to "disengage" their troops in August end.