China says talks with India on Doklam not possible now
New Delhi: Brushing aside Indian suggestions of a simultaneous withdrawal by Indian and Chinese troops from Doklam to end a nearly two-month-old military standoff, China on Tuesday ruled out the possibility of a dialogue with New Delhi as long as Indian troops were in the disputed northeastern plateau.
Beijing also warned of its “determination” to preserve its sovereignty at all costs.
According to China, India has “trespassed” into Chinese territory at Doklam—which China claims as its Donglang region. India on its part contends that China has intruded into Bhutanese territory from where it could progress inwards to cut off India’s access to its northeastern region.
“Even if there is only one Indian soldier, even for a day it is still a violation of our sovereignty and territorial integrity,” Wang Wenli, deputy director general of the Boundary and Ocean Affairs of China’s ministry of foreign affairs, was cited as saying by PTI in Beijing.
Wang was briefing a group of Indian journalists whose visit to Beijing was sponsored by the state-run All-China Journalists Association (ACJA), on China’s stand on the Doklam standoff.
“It is impossible to have a dialogue with India at this time. Our people will think our government is incompetent,” Wang was cited as saying, adding: “Until the Indian side withdraws from the Chinese territory, there will be no substantive talks between us.”
She also reiterated Beijing’s position that the only way to end the present crisis was the withdrawal of Indian troops from Doklam.
India says that it has reached an agreement with China in 2012 under which areas like Doklam which fall in the tri-junction between India, Bhutan and China should be resolved by India and China taking into account Bhutanese concerns and sensitivities.
“The Indian side has also many tri-junctions. What if we use the same excuse and enter the Kalapani region between China, India and Nepal or even into the Kashmir region between India and Pakistan,” Wang said.
Asked whether China was getting ready for a war with India, Wang said, “I can only say that for the PLA (People’s Liberation Army) and for the Chinese government, we have the determination. So, if the Indian side decides to go down the wrong path or still have illusions about this incident, then we have the right to use any act that is in line with the international law to protect our rights.” Wang said.
“The Indian border troops are sending a signal of aggression while the signals sent by the foreign ministry is for peaceful negotiations. So, we think these two signals do not match with each other,” she said.