Diplomacy Comes to a Halt in China and India Border Dispute

Diplomatic efforts to resolve an armed border dispute between China and India along the Doklam Plateau have hit a standstill, according to sources familiar with the matter and cited by Reuters.

Both sides have denied the other’s calls to pull troops back. In a last attempt, China offered to move back 328 feet instead a requested 820 feet as long as they got clearance, but the call has not been answered.

The dispute began in June when India’s military moved into the region to stop a Chinese construction crew meant to establish a road that India argues would give the Chinese military too much access than they are willing to allow.

“It is a logjam, there is no movement at all now,” said a source with knowledge of the talks in an interview with Reuters.

Meanwhile, Chinese state media has been warning of an escalation to the standoff, which now marks the most hostile instance the two countries have faced since their bloody border clash in the 1980s.

“If the Narendra Modi government continues ignoring the warning coming from a situation spiraling out of control, countermeasures from China will be unavoidable,” read a report by the Global Times.

The year thus far has not been a good one for relations between China and India, which remains perturbed by Beijing’s growing ties to its  rival Pakistan. Furthermore, India refused to take part in Chinese President Xi Jinping’s proposed Belt and Road initiative to connect Asia and open up the doors for trade beyond. China has warned New Delhi to be weary of a Western military alliance with the United States and Japan. Prime Minister Narendra Modi  has drawn closer to both.

“There will be no happy ending for this confrontation,” wrote Indian foreign policy expert C. Raja Mohan in the Indian Express newspaper.

About Andrew Burke 145 Articles
Editor-in-Chief Andrew Burke is a lifelong aficionado of all things Chinese. He studied Mandarin while living in Taiwan for six years and now works as a digitization specialist at the Yenching Library, which specializes in Asian books and documents, at Harvard University where he also studies topics related to China, Chinese, Asia and foreign affairs.