A US official’s remark that Arunachal Pradesh is an integral part of India, has irked China. ‘India and China are both wise nations and very much capable of dealing with the ‘Arunachal Pradesh’ issue. A third party intervention in the matter would only complicate the issue further’ was the warning issued by China to the US.
The US consul General Craig L. Hall, during his meeting on the 29th of April with the Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh, Kalikho Pul, had made a statement that Arunachal Pradesh is an integral part of India. He also made clear that he was speaking on behalf of the US government. China’s reaction to this has been no surprise. Arunachal, China claims, is southern Tibet and a part of their country, thus appearing to keep the pressure mounting on India.
India of course had completely rejected this claim on China’s part, emphatically affirming that Arunachal was indeed an integral part of India. The Indian Defence Minister too, on his visit to China a few days back, had very clearly stated India’s stand on the issue following which Craig Hall too had explicitly agreed and stated that Arunachal Pradesh was an integral part of India. This remark invited a sharp retort from China’s Foreign Affairs Ministry that India and China were both mature and capable enough to resolve the Arunachal issue and that a third party interference was totally uncalled for. China has also put on record, its vehement protest against the statement made by Craig Hall.
‘All third parties ought to respect the efforts that India and China have been undertaking to resolve the Arunachal question and show regard for the history and reality concerning the Indo-China border’ stated China.
The Chinese Ministry for Foreign Affairs also drew attention to the fact that positive talks over the border issue were on way between India and China and that despite the dispute, the two nations shared amicable relations. This indicated the existence of an atmosphere conducive to the resolution of the issue, the Chinese Foreign Affairs Ministry felt.
In the past too, China has been very sensitive about the statements made by other countries regarding Arunachal and the North-Eastern states of India. China had on the one hand, threatened Japan over its support extended to certain developmental projects in North-East India and on the other, expressed its annoyance over developmental projects initiated by the Indian Government in these states. However, India, responding very aggressively to this stance of China, has consistently clarified its stand. Also, the President and the Prime Minister of India have both been paying visits to the North-Eastern states conveying clearly India’s policy in the matter. In view of China’s movements around the border regions, India has also taken a decision to build up its defence capacities with the intention of retaliating if need be.