New Delhi: The US’s national security advisor on Saturday said that China has attempted to “seize” control of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with India by force as part of its territorial aggression, adding that time has come to accept that dialogue and agreements will not persuade Beijing to change. Also Read - Captured Chinese Soldier Who Strayed Into Ladakh Handed Over by Indian Army
Notably, this comes amid increasing tensions between India and China who are locked in a five-month-long tense border standoff in eastern Ladakh, resulting in a significantly strained relations between both countries. Despite holding a series of high-level diplomatic and military talks to resolve the border row, no breakthrough has been achieved to end the standoff so far. Also Read - COVID-19 Vaccine Update: China’s Sinovac Vaccine Appears Safe in Late-stage Clinical Trial
“CCP’s (Chinese Communist Party) territorial aggression is also apparent on its Indian border where China has attempted to seize control of the Line of Actual Control by force,” US National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien said in a remark on China early this week in Utah. Also Read - Amid India-China Standoff, Army Buys High-Altitude Warfare Gears From US on 'Urgent Basis': Report
“Beijing’s signature international development programme, One Belt One Road (OBOR), involves impoverished companies taking on opaque and unsustainable Chinese loans to pay Chinese firms employing Chinese labourers to build their infrastructure,” he said.
Many of these projects are unnecessary, shoddily built and are “white elephants”, the national security advisor said.
“And now these countries” dependence on the Chinese debt leaves their sovereignty eroded and with no choice but to hue to the party’s line on UN votes or any other issue that the Chinese Communist Party considers a red line,” he said.
O’Brien also noted that China’s other international aid efforts include selling surveillance systems and similar tools of repression to “pariah regimes” around the world, including Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro.
“The time has come to accept that dialogue and agreements will not persuade or compel the People’s Republic of China to change. There’s nothing to be gained from looking the other way or turning the other cheek. We’ve been doing that for too long,” he said.
O’Brien said the US must stand up to the Chinese and protect the American people.
“We must promote American prosperity, practice peace through strength and advance American influence in the world,” he said, adding that under President Donald Trump”s leadership that is exactly what the US has done.
The India-China border dispute covers the 3,488-km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC). China claims Arunachal Pradesh as part of southern Tibet, while India contests it.
The Chinese territorial aggression is also true in the Taiwan Strait where the PLA (People’s Liberation Army) Navy and Air Force continue to conduct threatening military drills, O’Brien said.
(With agency inputs)