Published On: Thu, Oct 10th, 2019

China news: India furious over Beijing aggression in Kashmir | World | News

Ladakh is a remote and picturesque part of the region that borders China. It is further divided administratively into the Leh district, which is predominantly Buddhist, and the Kargil district, which is mostly Muslim. There have been occasional border skirmishes between India and China. On October 31, New Delhi will seize control of the region raising fears about the future in both the Buddhist and Muslim communities, although so far the tensions have been confined to cultural and political differences, without violence. However, India and China have a long history of tension in the Ladakh and Doklam regions where border disputes have led to skirmishes as recently as last month. In 1962, a war between New Delhi and Beijing was sparked in the Kashmir region spilling into Ladakh, with conflict engulfing the Himalayan territory for a month.

But the tensions have not faded since then, with ongoing disputes provoking sporadic spikes in military gesturing.

In 2017, a standoff occurred at the Doklam border as India resisted a road being built in the region by China, and earlier this month, Chinese and Indian military clashed again when the Chinese People’s Liberation Army objected to Indian patrols in Ladakh.

Now, unease in Ladakh could be on the horizon with divides between Buddhist and Muslim communities looming.

Muslim residents want to remain tied to the Kashmir Valley while Buddhists celebrate the prospect of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi taking control of the region on October 31.

However, it has emerged that China President Xi Jinping has pushed increasingly audacious foreign policy over Ladakh, with analysts concerned that New Delhi may be losing control in the region.

Ashok Malik, distinguished fellow of New Delhi’s Observer Research Foundation told the Financial Times: “Even in hitherto uncontested parts of Ladakh, the superiority of Chinese infrastructure and military capacities has seen a creeping takeover of border areas.

“It is as if the effective line of actual control keeps moving a couple of inches in the direction of India. At some point, India has to say, ‘thus far and no further’.”

It is also believed that Chinese military intervention in the region is breaching areas overseen by Modi’s administration.

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This weekend, Xi Jinping will visit New Delhi for talks with Modi, with the situation in Kashmir bound to be a talking point with the two leaders looking to come to a compromise.

Words have been strong between the two leading up to the meeting- on Wednesday New Delhi said it did not welcome comments on its internal matters in response to a reference to “relevant” UN resolutions after Xi’s meeting with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan this week.

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