India rejects China’s demand, says withdrawal should be on both sides

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On its part, China kept up its belligerence saying Indian withdrawal is a pre-condition for any dialogue to take place.

India on Thursday rejected China’s demand for withdrawal of troops from the Doklam border area, saying the pull out should be from both sides for a dialogue to be held for resolving the month long military stand-off at the tri-junction in Sikkim sector.

On its part, China kept up its belligerence saying Indian withdrawal is a pre-condition for any dialogue to take place.

In the first exhaustive Indian comments on the border row, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj accused China of “unilaterally” trying to change the status quo at the tri-junction on the frontier with Bhutan.

She told the Rajya Sabha that while China was saying India should withdraw its troops from Doklam for negotiations to begin, India is saying that both countries should withdraw their troops.

“All countries are with us, as they all feel that China is being aggressive on a small country like Bhutan. Bhutan has lodged a written protest.”

The Minister said the Chinese action “is a challenge to our security” and India was not doing anything unreasonable.

In Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang reiterated that no talks would be held with India until it withdrew troops from Doklam.

“Our diplomatic channel is unimpeded and the withdrawal of the Indian border troops is the precondition for any meaningful dialogue and the communication between the two sides,” Lu said.

Lu said Indian troops “illegally trespassed into Chinese territory”.

Sushma Swaraj accused China of violating the terms of a written agreement reached between India, China and Bhutan in 2012. IANS

Source: Greater Kashmir

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