Tension on India-China borders shows Beijing’s aggression can be real, says US diplomat

The United States said on Wednesday that the tension on the border between India and China in Ladakh and Sikkim was a reminder of the fact that Chinese aggression can be real, not merely rhetorical. America’s remarks came after Indian and Chinese armies rushed in additional troops in areas around Pangong Tso and Galwan Valley in Ladakh, PTI reported.

“The flareups on the border, I think, are a reminder that Chinese aggression is not always just rhetorical,” Alice Wells, the head of the South and Central Asia bureau in the US Department of State, said. “And so whether it is the South China Sea or whether it is along the border with India, we continue to see provocations and disturbing behaviour by China.”

Earlier this month, there had been reports of China pitching tents near river Galwan, which was also a flash point between New Delhi and Beijing during the 1962 war, NDTV reported. Wells said on Wednesday that China’s behaviour poses questions about how it seeks to use its growing power.

“That’s why you’ve seen a rallying of like-minded nations whether it is in ASEAN [Association of South East Asian Nations] or through other diplomatic groupings like the trilateral with the US, Japan and India, or the Quad,” Wells said. She added that these groups are attempting to “reinforce the principles of the post-World War II global order that supported free and open trade”.

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