China claims Bhutan land, cautions India to refrain

China in its recent revisionist territorial ambitions has made claims in its eastern border with Bhutan this week increasing the anxieties for the Indian establishment.

Here are five components of the story:

  • According to the Indian Express, Beijing made this claim while objecting to a request to develop the Sakteng wildlife sanctuary in eastern Bhutan’s Trashigang district at an online meeting of the Global Environment Facility (GEF).
  • The Chinese foreign ministry pointed out that the China-Bhutan boundary has never been defined and said there have been disputes over the eastern, central, and western sections for a long time.
  • The sanctuary, located in the easternmost part of Bhutan, covers 650 sq km and has not been disputed by China in the past.
  • Chinese foreign ministry said, “a third party should not point fingers” signaling that India should not interfere in the border issue.
  • To this end, Bhutan and China have held 24 rounds of border talks, and if Beijing raises this issue in the next rounds of border talks, Thimphu will counter it according to a report in Indian Express. Previously India locked horns with China in Dhoklam located in Bhutan territory that spanned for months.
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