Infrastructure upgrades south of Xigaze Airport.(@detresfa_/Twitter)
Infrastructure upgrades south of Xigaze Airport.(@detresfa_/Twitter)

Satellite imagery shows China creating new military logistics hub in Tibet

  • Experts say the move comes in a bid to bolster connectivity and infrastructure for operations along the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
By Rezaul H Laskar | Edited by Sparshita Saxena, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 11, 2021 10:29 PM IST

China is working on what appears to be a major military logistics hub at Xigatse in Tibet, according to new satellite imagery. Experts believe the move is in line with Beijing’s efforts to ramp up connectivity and infrastructure for operations all along the Line of Actual Control (LAC).

The imagery, shared on Monday by the open-source intelligence analyst who uses the name @detresfa on Twitter, shows infrastructure upgrades south of Xigatse airport that link the facility to a rail terminal. The imagery suggests the infrastructure will be part of a logistics hub for China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA).

Among the under-construction structures captured by the imagery are a surface-to-air missile site, a suspected military support building, a new railway terminal and new railway line, and a possible fuel dump. The imagery also shows what appears to be a newly developed underground facility.

Earlier, the imagery of this same suspected underground facility had captured what appeared to be two tunnel entrances.

There was no immediate response from Indian officials to the development.

Sim Tack, a Belgium-based security analyst for Force Analysis, said there was mounting evidence in the form of satellite imagery of China’s massive upgrade of logistics facilities and connectivity across the Tibet Autonomous Region. The satellite imagery also suggested infrastructure is being upgraded or built to support military operations all along the LAC, from Aksai Chin to Arunachal Pradesh, he said.

Also read: Covid-19 can result in balance sheet impairments, says RBI Governor

“All of these logistical upgrades, including the construction of rail connectivity and utilities, appear to be aimed at quickly moving large numbers of forces within Tibet and from other parts of China to Tibet,” he said.

Referring to the new underground facility being built near the airport at Xigatse, the second-largest city in the Tibet Autonomous Region, he said it could be a specialised facility where missile systems can be stored.


The railway station at Xigatse is one of the largest in the region and plays a crucial role in the movement of troops and military hardware. China also has plans to extend the line from Xigatse to the border with Nepal.

“This new infrastructure is in line with China’s efforts to upgrade facilities all along the LAC. Earlier, there was evidence of the construction or upgrading of forward positions in Aksai Chin such as airbases, heliports and air defence sites. Now, there is evidence of the creation of logistical facilities,” Tack said.

“Things are moving very rapidly and it’s almost as if things are popping up out of the ground every time we review satellite imagery. Almost every day, new positions seem to be coming up as part of a very large infrastructure drive. For example, a lot of infrastructure is also being created at Golmud,” he said, referring to a city in Qinghai province that is also the third-largest city on the Tibetan plateau.

Also read: What PM Modi, chief ministers discussed at Covid vaccine roll-out meet

Recent satellite imagery has also shown that China is setting up villages in hitherto uninhabited stretches along its disputed borders with India and Bhutan, particularly in Arunachal Pradesh. Experts believe the move is aimed at buttressing China’s territorial claims in these areas.

Several villages have come up in the tri-junction between India, Bhutan and China, and the move dovetailed with the upgrading and construction of military facilities such as heliports and missile bases along the LAC in the aftermath of the 2017 standoff at Doklam.

At least five new border villages have been built by China near Bum La, the border pass between Cona county in Tibet Autonomous Region and Tawang district of Arunachal Pradesh. Similarly, a village has come up in Pangda area, which is claimed by Bhutan and located 10 kilometres from the site of the Doklam standoff.

Chinese state-run media had reported last year that 27 households with 124 people had moved from Yadong county to Pangda village last September.

A report authored last year by Sim Tack for Stratfor, a leading security and intelligence consultancy, had said that China began building at least 13 new military positions, including airbases and air defence units, near the LAC after the 2017 standoff at Doklam. Work on four heliports began after tensions erupted in Ladakh sector in April-May 2020.

The new positions included three airbases, five permanent air defence positions and five heliports.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Topics
Close
US President Joe Biden before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC, U.S, on Saturday. (Bloomberg Photo )
US President Joe Biden before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC, U.S, on Saturday. (Bloomberg Photo )

Joe Biden cheers new vaccine but cautions on Covid-19 variants

By hindustantimes.com | Posted by Kanishka Sarkar | Reuters, Washington
UPDATED ON FEB 28, 2021 06:14 AM IST
"Though we celebrate today’s news, I urge all Americans — keep washing your hands, stay socially distanced, and keep wearing masks," Biden said in a statement.
Close
FILE PHOTO: FILE PHOTO: Rohingya refugees sit on a makeshift boat as they get interrogated by the Border Guard Bangladesh after crossing the Bangladesh-Myanmar border, at Shah Porir Dwip near Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh November 9, 2017. REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar/File Photo/File Photo(REUTERS)
FILE PHOTO: FILE PHOTO: Rohingya refugees sit on a makeshift boat as they get interrogated by the Border Guard Bangladesh after crossing the Bangladesh-Myanmar border, at Shah Porir Dwip near Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh November 9, 2017. REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar/File Photo/File Photo(REUTERS)

India at UNGA: We have highest stake in defusing Rohingya crisis

PTI
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 06:02 AM IST
Myanmar doesn’t recognise Rohingya as an ethnic group and insists that they are Bangladeshi migrants living illegally in the country.
Close
People jog past a social distancing sign on in New Zealand's Auckland in this file picture. (REUTERS)
People jog past a social distancing sign on in New Zealand's Auckland in this file picture. (REUTERS)

Lockdown announced in Auckland, second in a month

Reuters, Melbourne
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 05:33 AM IST
The new case has been considered infectious for a week. The person, a 21-year-old student, visited a number of public spaces during that time.
Close
National Guard soldiers help to sign up people for their vaccination appointment at the York College coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccination site in New York City.(AFP file photo)
National Guard soldiers help to sign up people for their vaccination appointment at the York College coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccination site in New York City.(AFP file photo)

US House clears $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package

By HT Correspondent, Washington
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 05:24 AM IST
Four days after the Covid-19 death toll surpassed 500,000 in the United States, the sprawling measure, backed by President Joe Biden and seen as a moral imperative by many, now heads to the Senate for consideration next week.
Close
FILE PHOTO: A demonstrator holds a poster with a picture of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi outside the Saudi Arabia consulate in Istanbul, Turkey October 25, 2018. REUTERS/Osman Orsal(REUTERS)
FILE PHOTO: A demonstrator holds a poster with a picture of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi outside the Saudi Arabia consulate in Istanbul, Turkey October 25, 2018. REUTERS/Osman Orsal(REUTERS)

Jamal Khashoggi murder: Saudis reject charge

By HT Correspondent, Washington, Riyadh, Dubai
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 05:17 AM IST
“The government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia completely rejects the.... assessment in the report pertaining to the kingdom’s leadership, and notes that the report contained inaccurate information and conclusions,” the Saudi foreign ministry said in a statement carried by state news agency SPA after the US released the report on Friday.
Close
Police were out in force in cities and towns from early on Saturday in their most determined effort yet to stamp out the protests.(REUTERS)
Police were out in force in cities and towns from early on Saturday in their most determined effort yet to stamp out the protests.(REUTERS)

Myanmar: Woman shot at during crackdown on protests

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 05:10 AM IST
Three domestic media outlets said earlier that the woman shot in the central town of Monwya had died but an ambulance service official said she was in hospital. Police were not available for comment.
Close
By the end of March, J&J has said it expects to deliver 20 million doses to the U.S., and 100 million by summer.(MINT_PRINT)
By the end of March, J&J has said it expects to deliver 20 million doses to the U.S., and 100 million by summer.(MINT_PRINT)

J&J’s 1-dose shot cleared, giving US 3rd Covid-19 vaccine

Posted by Harshit Sabarwal | AP
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 04:58 AM IST
Health experts are anxiously awaiting a one-and-done option to help speed vaccinations, as they race against a virus that already has killed more than 510,000 people in the U.S. and is mutating in increasingly worrisome ways.
Close
The migrant camp in Matamoros, Mexico, just across the river from Brownsville, Texas, is currently home to just under 700 migrants, according to the U.N. refugee agency (UNHCR). (Reuters file photo)
The migrant camp in Matamoros, Mexico, just across the river from Brownsville, Texas, is currently home to just under 700 migrants, according to the U.N. refugee agency (UNHCR). (Reuters file photo)

As Mexico's largest migrant camp empties, new tents spring up along border

Posted by Harshit Sabarwal | Reuters
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 11:52 PM IST
One week ago, US President Joe Biden's administration began permitting members of the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) program to enter the United States to pursue their court cases.
Close
The 574 federally recognized tribes shared in $8 billion from a massive coronavirus relief package approved last March.(AP)
The 574 federally recognized tribes shared in $8 billion from a massive coronavirus relief package approved last March.(AP)

Covid-19 crisis leaves tribes without US recognition at higher risk

Posted by Harshit Sabarwal | AP
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 11:26 PM IST
Unlike federally recognized tribes, the Chinook Nation doesn't have a political relationship with the United States, which would make it eligible for federal coronavirus relief funding for state, local and tribal governments.
Close
Developed and rich nations are opposing the proposal.(AP | Representational image)
Developed and rich nations are opposing the proposal.(AP | Representational image)

Global growth to be hit if IP norms not waived to deal with Covid-19: India

PTI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 10:44 PM IST
In October 2020, India and South Africa submitted a proposal suggesting a waiver for all WTO (World Trade Organization) members on the implementation, application and enforcement of certain provisions of the TRIPS Agreement.
Close
NASA photo released on February 24, 2021, shows images from Perseverance rover of its new home in Jezero Crater.(via AFP)
NASA photo released on February 24, 2021, shows images from Perseverance rover of its new home in Jezero Crater.(via AFP)

Mars facts: What do we know about Red planet? How does it compare with Earth?

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Kunal Gaurav, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 10:40 PM IST
  • Earlier this month, Nasa safely landed its Perseverance rover in the Jezero Crater, determined as an ancient lakebed that formed billions of years ago.
Close
Vials with a sticker reading, "COVID-19 / Coronavirus vaccine / Injection only" and a medical syringe are seen in front of a displayed Johnson & Johnson logo in this illustration taken October 31, 2020. (REUTERS FILE)
Vials with a sticker reading, "COVID-19 / Coronavirus vaccine / Injection only" and a medical syringe are seen in front of a displayed Johnson & Johnson logo in this illustration taken October 31, 2020. (REUTERS FILE)

FDA set to approve J&J’s single-dose Covid vaccine, the third for US

By Yashwant Raj I Edited by Vinod Janardhanan
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 09:32 PM IST
US Food and Drug Administration has told Johnson & Johnson it will “rapidly work toward finalisation and issuance of an emergency use authorisation.”
Close
Workers install barbed wire on fencing outside the Hennepin County Government Center, Wednesday, Feb. 23, 2021 in Minneapolis.(AP)
Workers install barbed wire on fencing outside the Hennepin County Government Center, Wednesday, Feb. 23, 2021 in Minneapolis.(AP)

Growing tension in Minneapolis as trial looms in George Floyd's death

AP, Minneapolis
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 09:05 PM IST
  • Mayor Jacob Frey and Gov. Tim Walz, both Democrats, were sharply criticized for failing to move faster to stop last summer's looting and destruction.
Close
U.S. President Joe Biden in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, DC, US, on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. Biden revoked a proclamation from his predecessor that blocked many green card applicants from entering US.(Bloomberg)
U.S. President Joe Biden in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, DC, US, on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. Biden revoked a proclamation from his predecessor that blocked many green card applicants from entering US.(Bloomberg)

Undocumented immigrants should be vaccinated without ICE fear: Biden

ANI
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 08:37 PM IST
"I want to make sure they are able to get vaccinated and so they are protected from Covid without the ICE or anyone interfering," The Hill quoted Biden as saying during an interview with Univision.
Close
Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak speaks at the House of Commons in London, Britain January 11, 2021. UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor/Handout via REUTERS THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. MANDATORY CREDIT(via REUTERS)
Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak speaks at the House of Commons in London, Britain January 11, 2021. UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor/Handout via REUTERS THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. MANDATORY CREDIT(via REUTERS)

Sunak plots tax raid to plug UK deficit, risking Tory rage

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 08:27 PM IST
When he comes to deliver his budget on Wednesday, the chancellor of the exchequer faces a battle to persuade his colleagues of the need to turn down the flow of government spending, and to address the painful hole in the public finances, approaching 400 billion pounds ($558 billion).
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP