China passes new land border regulation amid navy standoff with India

Asserting that sovereignty and territorial integrity of China are “sacred and inviolable”, the nation’s nationwide legislature has adopted a brand new regulation on the safety and exploitation of the land border areas, which might have bearing on Beijing’s border dispute with India.

Members of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPC) authorised the regulation on the closing assembly of a legislative session on Saturday, state-run Xinhua information company reported.

The regulation, which turns into operational from January 1 subsequent 12 months, stipulates that “the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the People’s Republic of China are sacred and inviolable”, it stated.

The state shall take measures to safeguard territorial integrity and land boundaries and guard towards and fight any act that undermines territorial sovereignty and land boundaries, the report stated.

The regulation additionally stipulates that the state shall take measures to strengthen border defence, help financial and social improvement in addition to opening-up in border areas, enhance public companies and infrastructure in such areas, encourage and help folks’s life and work there, and promote coordination between border defence and social, financial improvement in border areas, it stated.

The state shall, following the precept of equality, mutual belief and pleasant session, deal with land border-related affairs with neighbouring nations via negotiations to correctly resolve disputes and longstanding border points, it stated.

India and Bhutan are the 2 nations with which China is but to finalise the border agreements, whereas Beijing resolved the boundary disputes with 12 different neighbours.

Last week, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla stated the developments alongside the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in jap Ladakh have “seriously disturbed” the peace and tranquillity in border areas, and this has clearly had an influence on the broader relationship too.

The overseas secretary, in his remarks at a seminar on “Leveraging China’s Economy” on Oct 21, additionally referred to External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar’s remarks that the power of India and China to work collectively will decide the Asian century.

“For this to materialise, peace and tranquillity in the border areas is a sine qua non. He (Jaishankar) has also clearly articulated that development of our ties can only be based on mutuality — mutual respect, mutual sensitivity and mutual interests should guide this process,” Shringla stated.

“We hope that the Chinese side will work with us to bring a satisfactory resolution to the current issues so as to make progress on our bilateral relations keeping in view each other’s sensitivities, aspirations and interests,” the overseas secretary stated.

While India-China border disputes cowl 3,488-km alongside the Line of Actual Control, China-Bhutan dispute covers about 400 km.

The new land border regulation was adopted amid the continued standoff between Indian and Chinese militaries in jap Ladakh.

On October 14, China and Bhutan signed an MOU firming up a three-step roadmap for expediting the boundary negotiations, which Beijing stated will make a “meaningful contribution” to hurry up the border talks and institution of diplomatic ties.