China on Wednesday defended its move to release a new “standard map” for 2023 showing Arunachal Pradesh and Aksai Chin as part of its territory, saying that it is a “routine practice” in accordance with its law and urged India to “stay objective and calm” and refrain from “over-interpreting” the issue.
India on Tuesday lodged a strong protest with China over its so-called “standard map” laying claim over Arunachal Pradesh and the Aksai Chin, and asserted that such steps only complicate the resolution of the boundary question. The External Affairs Ministry also rejected these claims as having “no basis”. “Just making absurd claims does not make other people’s territories yours,” External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar told NDTV while reacting to the Chinese move.
Asked for his reaction to India’s diplomatic protest by a Chinese state-run outlet, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told a media briefing in Beijing on Wednesday that on August 23, the Ministry of National Resources of China released the 2023 edition of the standard map.
“It is a routine practice in China’s exercise of sovereignty in accordance with the law. We hope relevant sides can stay objective and calm, and refrain from over-interpreting the issue,” Wang said.
China on Monday officially released the 2023 edition of its “standard map” that claimed Arunachal Pradesh and Aksai Chin as belonging to that country. The “map” also showed the entire South China Sea as part of China as it featured in the previous editions of the ‘map’.
The ties between India and China came under severe strain following the eastern Ladakh border row that began in May 2020. The Indian and Chinese troops are locked in an over three-year confrontation in certain friction points in eastern Ladakh even as the two sides completed disengagement from several areas following extensive diplomatic and military talks. India has been consistently maintaining that peace and tranquillity along the LAC were key for the normalisation of overall ties.