Construction on 'own territory' normal, says China on report of building village in Arunachal


NEW DELHI: China's construction activities on "its own territory" is "normal" and is entirely a matter of sovereignty, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said here on Thursday, reacting to a report about China building a new village in Arunachal Pradesh.

"China's position on the east sector of the China-India boundary, or Zangnan region (the southern part of China's Tibet), is consistent and clear. We have never recognised the so-called Arunachal Pradesh illegally established on the Chinese territory," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told a media briefing while responding to a question.

China claims Arunachal Pradesh as part of southern Tibet, while India's consistent stand has been that the northeastern state is an integral and inalienable part of the country.

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"China's normal construction on its own territory is entirely a matter of sovereignty," Hua was quoted as saying by the Chinese foreign ministry on its website in an updated statement.

In a report, NDTV news channel showed two images of the area in Arunachal Pradesh where it said a new village has been set up by China and it consisted of about 101 homes. According to the channel, the first image dated August 26, 2019 did not show any human habitation but the second one of November 2020 shows a row of structures.

In a cautious reaction to the report, India on Monday said it keeps a constant watch on all developments having a bearing on the country's security, and takes necessary measures to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi said India has stepped up the construction of border infrastructure, including roads and bridges for the improvement of livelihood of its citizens.

"Government keeps a constant watch on all developments having a bearing on India's security and takes all the necessary measures to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial integrity," it said.

The India-China border dispute covers the 3,488-km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC).

The report about China setting up a new village in Arunachal Pradesh comes amid a military standoff in eastern Ladakh for over eight months.

India and China have held several rounds of military and diplomatic talks to resolve the face-off in eastern Ladakh, but no significant headway has been made so far. (PTI)