China's veiled warning to India

New Delhis patronage to Dalai to undermine ties

“China hopes India can scrupulously abide by its promise and slash any of Dalai Lama and his followers’ words and actions that may harm China’s interests and undermine the Sino-Indian relations,” Zhang Yan, Beijing’s envoy to New Delhi, told China.org.cn—an official website of the Chinese Government.

Zhang was interviewed by the China.org.cn, the portal of the China Internet Information Centre, on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relation between the two neighbours. The portal is published by the State Council Information Office and the China International Publishing Group.

Diplomatic ties

The Chinese envoy’s remark on the Tibet issue came even as President Pratibha Patil and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday exchanged greetings with their Chinese counterparts Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao respectively to mark the completion of six decades of diplomatic relation.

He said the Tibet issue was one of “some historical problems hindering the course of the relation” between Beijing and New Delhi.

McMahon Line

While Beijing claims the entire Arunachal Pradesh as an integral part of China, Tawang — a small town near the Sino-Indian Line of Actual Control  — is believed to a main bone of contention between the two neighbours. Tawang is the birthplace of the sixth Dalai Lama and officially ceased to be a part of Tibet in 1914, when the McMahon Line was drawn and the Simla Agreement was signed by the British rulers.

But China strongly reacted to India’s decision to allow Dalai Lama to visit Tawang and other areas in Arunachal Pradesh. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaxou said the visit “exposed the Dalai Lama clique’s anti-China and separatist nature.”

India, however, did not acquiesce and used the media-glare on Dalai Lama’s visit to re-assert its claim on Tawang and the rest of Arunachal Pradesh, as an integral part of India.

Zhang noted that the Indian Government had reiterated “its admission that the Tibet Autonomous Region is a part of the People’s Republic of China” and promised it would “never allow the Dalai Lama to undertake anti-China activities within the Indian territory.”

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