China’s state-sponsored propaganda media appears spooked by Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj’s statement on the Sikkim standoff in Parliament on Thursday. Swaraj had said that China intends to unilaterally change the status of the Sikkim tri-junction with Bhutan, which poses a challenge to India’s security. While informing the Parliament that other countries of the world are supporting India on the issue, Swaraj also referred to the written agreement between India, China and Bhutan in 2012 that the three nations will together decide on the boundaries at the tri-junction point.
Both Indian and Chinese soldiers have been locked in a face-off in Dokalam area, which is claimed by China, for over a month. The standoff started after Indian troops stopped the Chinese forces from constructing a road in the disputed area. In clear words, Swaraj told the Parliament that India was ready for talks but that cannot happen unless armies are taken back by both sides. “We are saying that the matter can be resolved through talks, but both sides have to first take back their armies,” PTI quoted her as saying.
According to Swaraj, China had been constructing roads in the area earlier also but now they have brought in bulldozers and excavators. “Their (China’s) intention was to reach the tri-junction so that they can unilaterally end the status of the tri-junction. It was only then that India came into the picture.
“If China unilaterally changes the tri-junction point, then India’s security is challenged,” she said, adding Bhutan has also protested in writing to China on this issue.
Swaraj also said that all other countries are supporting India on this issue. Swaraj’s statement, however, apparently unnerved Chinese state media Global Times so much that it went on to accuse Swaraj of “lying” to the Parliament.
“She (Swaraj) was lying to the parliament. First, India’s invasion of Chinese territory is a plain fact. New Delhi’s impetuous action stuns the international community. No other country will support India’s aggression,” Global Times said in an editorial.
Not only this, the editorial went on to remind the world of China’s military might.
“Second, India’s military strength is far behind that of China. If the conflict between China and India escalates to the intensity where their row has to be resolved through military means, India will surely lose,” said the report.
Global Times further threatened India that China may go to war if India doesn’t compromise. “India should abandon the fantasy of a long-term standoff at Doklam. China will by no means agree to the withdrawal of troops from both sides in order for talks to be held. Doklam is Chinese territory. The withdrawal of Indian troops must be a precondition for talks and China will not compromise on this stance.”
“If New Delhi remains stubborn, India should get prepared for all possibilities from a potentially grave escalation of tension in the future,” it added.