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No 'Compromise' With Ajit Doval on Border Standoff, Says Chinese Media

National Security Advisor Ajit Doval attends the seventh meeting of BRICS senior representatives on security issues held at the Diaoyutai state guesthouse in Beijing on July 28, 2017. (REUTERS/Ng Han Guan/Pool)

National Security Advisor Ajit Doval attends the seventh meeting of BRICS senior representatives on security issues held at the Diaoyutai state guesthouse in Beijing on July 28, 2017. (REUTERS/Ng Han Guan/Pool)

National Security Advisor Ajit Doval’s visit to China for a BRICS NSAs meeting had raised expectations of a resolution to the Doklam standoff, but the Chinese media continues to carry a blistering campaign accusing India of trespassing into Chinese territory.

New Delhi: There will be no “compromise” on the Doklam standoff with India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval who is in Beijing for a BRICS Summit, state-controlled Chinese media has quoted experts as saying.

"China's position will not change and the Indian government and media should better abandon the illusion of using force to bully China into a compromise," Hu Zhiyong, a research fellow at the Institute of International Relations of the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times.

"The Doklam Plateau is Chinese territory, something also India acknowledges. So, how can we withdraw our troops from our own territory after Indian troops have crossed the border?" Hu is quoted as saying.

The armies of both countries have been engaged in a standoff since June 16 in Sikkim section where India and China share a 220-km-long border. Doka La is the Indian name for the region which Bhutan recognises as Dokalam, while China claims it as part of its Donglang region.

Ajit Doval and China's State Councillor Yang Jiechi, who are Special Representatives of India-China border, held a separate meeting on Thursday to discuss bilateral issues, during which they were also understood to have discussed the standoff.

Though China had maintained that there won't be a meaningful dialogue without the unconditional withdrawal of Indian troops, India has been maintaining that the unilateral action by China to build a road in the area was altering the status quo and had serious security implications for India.

India has also been pitching for diplomatic solution to resolve the standoff but sought simultaneous withdrawal of troops of both the sides from the tri-junction with Bhutan. However, the Chinese official media has been carrying a blistering campaign accusing India of trespassing into Chinese territory.

In its latest such attempt, the Global Times quoted experts who claimed the standoff won’t dominate the BRICS forum.

"The China-India border tension will not dominate the meeting in Beijing because this is a regular meeting between BRICS countries rather than an emergency multilateral meeting on the border tension. As the host, we also need to consider other BRICS guests and discuss other important issues," Hu Zhiyong said.

Lin Minwang, a professor at Fudan University's Center for South Asian Studies, said China is “unlikely to further clarify its redline or even deliver an ultimatum” if India refuses to withdraw troops “because we still want to offer India a chance for a peaceful solution”.

One of the experts even attempted to link the issue to the upcoming plenary of the Communist Party of China. "India's behavior is like 'blackmail' to some extent as it knows China will hold the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, which is a key political event," Jin Canrong, associate dean of the Department of International Studies at the Renmin University of China, told the Global Times.

"However, India's 'blackmail' will fail. Although China's military deployment is less, its quality is superior to India's, and the People's Liberation Army (PLA) has the ability to deploy more troops from other provinces to the border area in Tibet. China has nothing to be afraid of even if the situation requires a military solution," Hu said.

Doval arrived in Beijing on Wednesday to take part in the Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa (BRICS) NSAs meeting. His visit has raised expectations about the likelihood of India and China finding a way-out of the over the month-long standoff.

Doval, along with other heads of the delegations, will also call on Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday evening.