Sikkim border stand-off: After Arun Jaitley’s snub, China says ‘we are different too from 1962’

Beijing: Amid an ongoing border stand-off with India, Beijing on Monday reacted to Defence Minister Arun Jaitley’s recent remarks, saying that China of 2017 is also different from China of 1962.

“To some extent he (Jaitley) is right in saying that India in 2017 is different from the India in 1962, just like China is also different,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said, referring to Indian Defence Minister Arun Jaitley.

Defence Minister Arun Jaitley had last week said that India of 2017 was not the India of 1962 and the country was well within its right to defend its territorial integrity.

India had, meanwhile, pushed more troops in a “non-combative mode” to strengthen its position in an area near Sikkim after which China called for withdrawal of forces in order to de-escalate tension and resolve the fresh border stand-off between the two countries.

The Indian and Chinese troops recently had a face-off at Doklam or Donglong, a disputed territory between China and Bhutan.

While Beijing asked New Delhi to withdraw troops from Donglong region, it accused India of infringing upon Bhutan’s sovereignty.

It also said that India was using Bhutan to confuse right with wrong.

“In order to cover up the illegal entry of Indian border troops, they distort the facts,” Geng said.

“And even at the expense of the Bhutan’s independence and sovereignty, they try to confuse right with wrong, which is futile.”

While China has cited the Sino-British Treaty to buttress its claims, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) in New Delhi had in a statement said yesterday that “where the boundary in the Sikkim sector is concerned, India and China had reached an understanding also in 2012 reconfirming their mutual agreement on the ‘basis of the alignment'”.