The Chinese media ratcheted up their rhetoric on Friday on the current standoff with India over the Doklam issue, saying China may undertake “a small-scale military operation to expel Indian troops within two weeks.”
Two Chinese ministries – the defence and the foreign – and four other institutions released statements and commentaries on a standoff that entered its 50th day on Friday.
“The series of remarks from the Chinese side within a 24-hour period sends a signal to India that there is no way China will tolerate the Indian troops’ incursion into Chinese territory for too long. If India refuses to withdraw, China may conduct a small-scale military operation within two weeks,” state-owned Global Times quoted Hu Zhiyong, a research fellow at the Institute of International Relations of the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, as saying.
Hu, however, added that China will inform India’s foreign ministry before undertaking any such operation.
China has repeatedly exhorted India to pull back the “trespassing troops” back to Indian side of the boundary and address the matter in a proper manner to restore peace in the region, a defence ministry spokesperson said in a statement.
China Central Television (CCTV) on Friday reported that Tibet military region conducted live fire exercises in recent days in Tibet.
“The exercises are a sign that China could use military means to end the standoff and the chances of doing so are increasing as the Indian side is still saying one thing and doing another,” Zhao Gancheng, director of the Center for Asia-Pacific Studies at the Shanghai Institute for International Studies, told the Global Times.
Zhao warned India that the patience of China was withering away, and it doesn’t want the ongoing faceoff to cast any influence on the forthcoming BRICS Summit.
Shedding light on the military might of China, in another op-ed piece, Global Times wrote that “Prime Minister Narendra Modi should be aware of the PLA’s overwhelming firepower and logistics”.
The article stressed that the PLA is perfectly capable of “annihilating all Indian troops” in the border region. This Modi administration is “recklessly breaking international norms and jeopardizing India’s national pride and peaceful development”, the article read.
If the Modi government doesn’t stop, the article warned “India of pushing itself into a war that India has no power to control”.
Chinese media’s aggression came a day after External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said that war was not a solution, wisdom was to resolve the issue diplomatically. Swaraj had noted that “military readiness is always there as the military is meant to fight wars”.
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