lørdag 23. mai 2020

India Voices Unusual Criticism of China’s Conduct in South China Sea

India has voiced a rare note of criticism of China’s assertive actions in the South China Sea, amid a tensions between the two Asian powers on their long land border. A New Delhi-based analyst said India is concerned over China pressuring South China Sea claimant nations that India considers partners. India is also wary that China could seek to assert itself in the Indian Ocean.

On Thursday, India’s Ministry of External Affairs commented on the recent incidents along the Line of Actual Control – the nearly 2,200 mile unsettled border between China and India. Chinese and Indian troops clashed on May 5 over road construction the Indian side was completing at Pangong Tso, a glacial lake bordering Ladakh and Tibet. They clashed again May 9 near Doklam, which borders India China, and Bhutan. Soldiers were reportedly wounded on both sides in the clashes.

At the same news conference, ministry spokesman Anurag Srivastave was also asked about recent unilateral actions by China in the South China Sea: the establishment of two new administrative districts for the disputed Paracel and Spratly Islands and the naming 80 obscure geographical features over the objections of other claimants.

“(The) South China Sea is a part of (the) global commons and India has an abiding interest in peace and stability in the region,” Srivastave said. “We firmly stand with the freedom of navigation and overflight and unimpeded lawful commerce in these international waterways, in accordance with international law.”