China’s expanding footprint in Gilgit-Baltistan

Updated: November 05, 2012 14:11 IST

Pakistan has not only leased out Gilgit-Baltistan to its neighbor and close ally, China, but has put at risk the region’s culture, language and natural wealth. Ruled like a colony from Islamabad since 1948, Gilgit-Baltistan is today being exploited by China for its strategic and economic interest. Known for its scenic beauty, Gilgit-Baltistan is now facing another severe challenge of an ecological imbalance in nature due to the massive use of toxic chemicals while mining by the Chinese. China has built the 528 mile-long Karakorum highway without paying a single penny to the local people. In return, Pakistan gifted 2,500 sq mile area of Shamshaal in Hunza to China.

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