In a controversial move, Chinese President Xi Jinping has asked the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) troops to prepare for war amid a border row with India, according to reports on Wednesday. Jinping has called on Chinese troops to “put all (their) minds and energy on preparing for war” in a visit to a military base in Guangdong province on October 13 (Tuesday), CNN reported quoting Chinese news agency Xinhua The remarks were made when he was inspecting the Marine Corps of PLA in Chaozhou City, added CNN citing Xinhua. As per Xinhua, Xi ordered the troops to “maintain a state of high alert” and called on them to be “absolutely loyal, absolutely pure, and absolutely reliable”.
Xi’s visit to Guangdong was to deliver a speech on Wednesday commemorating the 40th anniversary of the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone. It was established in 1980 and played an important role in helping China’s economy become the second-largest in the world. The development comes amid the tension between India and China at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Ladakh. On Tuesday both the nations agreed to focus on a mutually acceptable solution for disengagement as early as possible after holding talks for around 11 hours. The 7th Corps Commander level meeting between India and China to address the situation at LAC ended at around 11:30 pm on October 12 (Monday). “Both sides agreed to maintain dialogue and communication through military and diplomatic channels, and arrive at a mutually acceptable solution for disengagement as early as possible,” also added the statement. “Both sides agreed to earnestly implement the important understandings reached by the leaders of the two countries, not to turn differences into disputes, and jointly safeguard peace and tranquility in the border areas,” it further said.
“On 12 October, the 7th round of Senior Commanders meeting of India and China was held in Chushul. The two sides had a sincere, in-depth, and constructive exchange of views on disengagement along the Line of Actual Control in the Western Sector of India-China border areas. They were of the view that these discussions were positive, constructive, and had enhanced understanding of each other’s positions,” it added. Meanwhile, a day after Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated bridges in Ladakh and Arunachal Pradesh, China on October 13 (Tuesday) took offense and targetted India. China had said that India has been ramping up infrastructure development “along the border and stepping up military deployment”. It further accused India of causing tension between the two nations.
Heralding in a new era in the connectivity of roads and bridges in sensitive areas close to western, northern, and northeastern borders, Singh on October 12 (Monday) dedicated 44 major permanent bridges to the nation. The bridges are located in J&K (10), Ladakh (08), Himachal Pradesh (02), Punjab (04), Uttarakhand (08), Arunachal Pradesh (08), and Sikkim (04). However, China that refuses to recognize Ladakh and Arunachal Pradesh raked up an issue over the bridges that India has built within its territory. China had said, “Indian side has been ramping up infrastructure development along the border and stepping up military deployment, that is the root cause of the tension between the two sides.”
Replying to a question China had said, “First, I want to make it clear, China doesn’t recognize Ladakh Union Territory, illegally established by India and also Arunachal Pradesh. China stands against the development of infrastructure facilities aimed at military contention along the border area. Based on the two sides’ consensus, neither should take action that might escalate the situation. That could also undermine efforts to ease the situation.” It had added, “For some time, the Indian side has been ramping up infrastructure development along the border and stepping up military deployment, that is the root cause of the tension between the two sides. China asks the Indian side to earnestly implement the consensus between the two sides and refrain from taking actions that might escalate the situation and take concrete measures to safeguard peace and tranquillity along the border.”