China denies ‘completely unfounded rumor’ it annexed Nepal’s territory
The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson refuted the “completely unfounded rumor” that it has seized more than 150 hectares from neighboring Nepal.
Beijing on Tuesday denied reports claiming it sent troops to seize Nepalese land in five districts in May. A report citing Nepalese politicians Rakesh Kumar Mishra and Jivan Bahadur Shahi was published by British newspaper the Daily Telegraph.
People’s Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers were accused of moving stone pillars that had marked the border in Limi Valley and Hilsa, as well as allegedly constructing military bases in the area, which the newspaper published purported images of.
In the Gorkha district, Chinese personnel were also reportedly seen moving boundary markers deeper into Nepal’s territory. The alleged annexation was also witnessed in Rasuwa, Sankuwasabha, and Sindhupalchowk, where PLA troops were accused of diverting the flow of rivers to change the natural boundaries they formed.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin dismissed the claims as a “completely unfounded rumor.”
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Tuesday’s report accusing China of seizing Nepalese territory comes weeks after another UK paper, the Daily Express, quoted Shahi about China’s activity in the region. The Nepalese politician told the newspaper he had “detailed information about the encroached upon” land, claiming that Chinese forces had constructed a boundary pillar without prior approval from Nepal.
Protests against China for construction in the Humla district were staged by local civil society groups in September. However, Nepal’s Ministry of External Affairs was quick to deny the allegations, saying the Chinese buildings were not located within Nepali territory.
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While China and Nepal have no formal border or territorial disputes, with the two sides maintaining close bilateral relations, there have been concerns about China encroaching on Nepalese territory since 2015, with boundary markers being moved and China building houses on border areas that, they claim, are Chinese territory.
The latest reports come just months after Nepal found itself in the middle of a border dispute between China and another major regional power, India. Earlier this year, troops from the two nations clashed in Eastern Ladakh, which resulted in casualties on both sides, although Beijing has not officially commented on the numbers. India and China are currently engaged in ongoing military- and diplomatic-level dialogue in hopes of arriving at a “mutually acceptable solution.”
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Source:RT World News