China terms General Naravane’s remark on ‘threat’ in Ladakh unconstructive

Published on Jan 14, 2022 12:41 AM IST

Speaking to reporters on Wednesday ahead of Army Day, General Naravane had said that the Chinese threat in the region had not reduced in any way despite partial disengagement

Chief of army staff General MM Naravane was speaking to the media a day ahead of Army Day. (ANI FILE)
Chief of army staff General MM Naravane was speaking to the media a day ahead of Army Day. (ANI FILE)
BySutirtho Patranobis

China on Thursday criticised Indian Army chief General MM Naravane’s comments about the Chinese threat in the Ladakh region, saying it hopes Indian officials would “refrain” from making “unconstructive” comments.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said at a press briefing on Thursday: “China and India are working through diplomatic and military channels to advance the easing of the border tension. We hope that certain individual on the Indian side would refrain from making unconstructive remarks.”

Speaking to reporters on Wednesday ahead of Army Day, General Naravane had said that the Chinese threat in the region had not reduced in any way despite partial disengagement at multiple friction points along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh.

On Tuesday, confirming the date for the 14th round of talks between the militaries for both countries, Wang had said: “Currently, the situation on the border areas is stable on the whole and the two sides are in dialogue and communication through diplomatic and military channels.

“We hope India will work to help the situation to move from emergency handling to a regular daily based management phase,” Wang had added.

The last round of talks in October had concluded amid major differences between the two sides.

Indian and Chinese border troops have been locked in a border standoff in eastern Ladakh since May, 2020, when a violent clash in Pangong lake area led to both sides gradually deploying tens of thousands of soldiers as well as heavy weaponry along the border.

Several rounds of military and diplomatic talks have only resulted in partial disengagement of troops until now.

Ahead of the Wednesday talks, an editorial in state-run China Daily newspaper warned India not be led “astray” by the US.

The editorial quoted White House press secretary Jen Psaki describing China as a threat to regional security with its “attempt to intimidate its neighbors” and that the US will “…continue to stand with our partners on that”.

“India must not be led astray by such remarks. It should engage in the talks with sincerity and strive to meet China half-way so that they can work together to solve their border disputes,” the editorial said.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Sutirtho Patranobis has been in Beijing since 2012, as Hindustan Times’ China correspondent. He was previously posted in Colombo, Sri Lanka, where he covered the final phase of the civil war and its aftermath. Patranobis covered several beats including health and national politics in Delhi before being posted abroad.

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