Karmapa Lama, the third highest ranking lama, speaks during an interview with Reuters in the northern hill town of Dharamsala in March 2009.(Reuters)
Karmapa Lama, the third highest ranking lama, speaks during an interview with Reuters in the northern hill town of Dharamsala in March 2009.(Reuters)

Don't complicate border issue, China says after Karmapa’s Arunachal visit

China said on Monday that India shouldn’t take any step that could complicate the festering boundary issue, reacting to New Delhi allowing the Karmapa, an exiled Tibetan leader, to visit Arunachal Pradesh, which is claimed by Beijing.
Hindustan Times | By Sutirtho Patranobis, Beijing
UPDATED ON DEC 05, 2016 06:47 PM IST

China said on Monday that India shouldn’t take any step that could complicate the festering boundary issue, reacting to New Delhi allowing the Karmapa, an exiled Tibetan leader, to visit Arunachal Pradesh, which is claimed by Beijing.

Urgyen Trinley Dorje, the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, heads one of the four main schools of Tibetan Buddhism, making his visit to the border state even more irksome for China. 

“China’s position on the east section of the China-India border is clear and consistent. We hope India can abide by relevant consensus and refrain from any action that might complicate the boundary question,” foreign ministry spokesperson Lu Kang told a regular news briefing. 

“We should ensure peace and stability of border areas, and sound and steady development of bilateral relations serves the common interests of the two sides,” Lu said when asked about the Karmapa’s visit. 

“China and India have constant communication on this and India is also very clear about our solemn position when it comes to the boundary question,” he added. 

The Karmapa toured West Kameng district and interacted with Tibetans at Gyuto monastery at Tenzingang.  Earlier, minister of state for home Kiren Rijiju thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for doing away with the restrictions imposed on the Tibetan leader’s visit by previous governments. 

In late October, China objected to a planned visit by the Dalai Lama to Arunachal Pradesh, saying it would damage bilateral ties and amount to New Delhi breaching a political commitment on the boundary question. 

Beijing’s sharp reaction came after it became known that the Dalai Lama could visit Arunachal Pradesh in early 2017 at the invitation of the state’s chief minister Pema Khandu. “We are seriously concerned about the relevant information,” spokesperson Lu Kang said at the time, when asked for a reaction on the visit. 

That was China’s second strong reaction on Arunachal Pradesh in less than a week — the first came after US ambassador Richard Verma’s visit to the state.  

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