Dharamshala (Himachal Pradesh): American Pacific Army`s General Charles A Flynn recently raised alarm over China`s infrastructure build-up near the Indo-Tibet border near Ladakh. China has responded with strong dismissal and its foreign minister spokesperson Zhao Lijian said, “Some US officials have pointed fingers and sought to fan the flame and drive a wedge between the two countries. This is disgraceful. We hope the US could do more things that contribute to regional peace and stability.”
Choekyi Lhamo, writing in Phayul reported that China on Thursday accused the US General of attempting to “fan flames” through his statements. Notably, the US General on Wednesday had reportedly said that the defence infrastructure constructed by China near the Indian border is “alarming”, and “eye-opening”.
Zhao Lijian further said that the border issue was a matter to be solved between the two countries, adding “Both sides have the will and capability of resolving the question through dialogue and consultation”.
The Chinese embassy in New Delhi also addressed the matter by noting that the allegations against China were “without any factual basis” and accused the US of violating the norms of “basic principles of diplomacy”. The construction of a Chinese bridge, termed highly `strategic` by analysts, was completed on the Pangong Lake`s border territory in Khurnak, which extends across Ladakh and Tibet.
In February this year, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan had informed the Lok Sabha a bridge was being constructed by China on Pangong lake in areas that have continued to be under the illegal occupation of China since 1962, adding that the Government of India has never accepted this “illegal” occupation.
In the summer of 2020, the Ladakh border standoff between India and China erupted following a clash of the Armies in the Pangong area. The situation escalated after the Galwan Valley clashes in June of the same year. Both the countries have so far held 15 rounds of talks for disengagement to defuse the tensions in the area.
As a result, India and China have disengaged their troops in the Gogra Heights area of eastern Ladakh, and the troops of the two sides also disengaged in the Pangong Lake area in February last year.
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After China’s construction of a bridge over the Pangong lake in Ladakh, a senior official of the Chushul region reportedly claimed that Beijing has installed mobile towers near its side of the border. In a tweet, Chushul Councillor Konchok Stanzin flagged the issue claiming that three mobile towers have been installed near China`s hot spring very close to the Indian territory.
Beijing’s policy destroying Tibet’s environment
The nature-bound systems of Tibet are now being shattered and destroyed by Beijing for their own benefit, not even giving an iota of thought to the inhabitants, according to the recent White Paper on Tibet titled `Tibet since 1951: Liberation, Development and Prosperity from Beijing`. The report highlighted very clearly how there was no concern about the level of destruction to Tibet`s environment, said an ANI report citing Tibet Press.
According to the report, over 50 per cent of the official document engaged in the development, building more dams and undertaking several infrastructural initiatives with ironically only one paragraph mentioning anything at all about Tibet`s environment. Instead of acknowledging the environmental destruction in Tibet, it painted a good light on the government by wanting to take eco-friendly and sustainably motivated steps moving forward.
Tibet Press has reported that Chinese activities eventually lead to the drying up of rivers, glacial melting, thawing of permafrost, flooding, loss of grasslands and many more – all occurring due to the environmental destruction in Tibet under the hawkish eyes of President Xi Jinping.
Xi Jinping skipped the largest environmental summit – the Conference of Parties (CoP) 26 summit, held last year in Glasgow. His absence had invited wide criticism as China is not only the largest polluting nation but its Carbon emission has also been on an unprecedented rise despite signing various environmental agreements, ANI reported.
According to Tibet Press, Beijing sees Tibet as a dump zone rather than a safe haven and does not provide it with the required resources to protect the very fragile but significant ecosystem and unique biome. Tibet experiences the harsh reality of climate change through environmental destruction and degradation advocated by policies from Beijing.
The construction of dams has been noticed by the world with the world`s largest dam `The Three Gorges dam` brought to international scrutiny as this and many other damming projects, which Beijing seems to favour, bring a multi-layered impact on the environment.
On top of this Beijing`s declaration of a Carbon neutral zone by 2060 (which is 10 years after the deadline set in the Paris treaty) is deeply connected to Tibet as they view it as the perfect carbon dumping zones – to fulfil this postponed target.
(With ANI Inputs)