Watch: Chinese embassy in Delhi releases video explaining its side of Doklam standoff
The video is unprecedented, and is meant to talk to the Indian public directly.? Photograph: (Others)
In an unprecedented move, the Chinese embassy in New Delhi has released a video that talks directly to the Indian public.
In the video -- which is 3 minutes and 29 seconds long -- the embassy's political counsellor talks about the current standoff between India and China in Doklam.
Doklam is a plateau near where Bhutan, India (Sikkim), and Tibet meet.
India believes it belongs to Bhutan.
China claims it, and China and Bhutan are currently in talks to resolve the dispute.
Bhutan however has no diplomatic ties with China.
The standoff, reports say, began on June 16 this year when the Chinese Army began building a road in the region.
The Bhutanese Army tried to stop them but were pushed back.
They then approached Indian troops for help, who intervened, leading to the standoff.
In the video, the political counsellor says: "Some Indian friends are deeply worried about the face-off between Chinese and Indian troops in Doklam."
"I have been to the China-Indian and China-Bhutan border areas many times, and have first-hand knowledge about Doklam. In this sense, I would like to share my perception on the current situation in Doklam."
He then goes on to say that "on June 18, Indian troops crossed the Sikkim section of the China-India border, triggering the close-range face off."
He then says that "this section is delimited by the The Convention between China and Great Britain Relating to Tibet and Sikkim in 1890."
And adds that "In essence, China's territorial sovereignity has been undermined by the Indian border troops."
He then says: "After the incident, the Indian side claims that Doklam belongs to Bhutan, Chinese side changed the status quo and India has security concern. These are three major arguments of Indian side to justify its trespassing into the Chinese territory.
He then says "these are three major arguments of Indian side to justify its trespassing into the Chinese territory."
"Based on my knowledge... ", he then says, "I would like to say India's positions are groundless."
Then: "As to 'Doklam belongs to Bhutan', we have strong evidence to prove that Doklam belongs to China."
After giving his evidence, he concludes: "As far as the solution is concerned, the Indian troops must pull back unconditionally and immediately. That is the precondition for any meaningful dialogue between China and India."
It is unclear what the Chinese hope to achieve by the video.
The standoff has had a number of consequences, including the calling off of the Kailash Mansarovar yatra -- through the Nathu La pass in Sikkim -- into Tibet.
The Chinese state-run Global Times, which is known to be hawkish, has run a number of alarming editorials egging on the dispute.
In one, the paper has said “India has startling control and oppression over Bhutan, and as a result, Bhutan has not established diplomatic ties with its neighbor China or any other permanent member of the UN Security Council. Through unequal treaties, India has severely jeopardized Bhutan's diplomatic sovereignty and controls its national defense,”
In another, it said China should encourage pro-independence feelings in Sikkim.
China had recognised Sikkim's 1975 merger with India in 2003 but the Global Times editorial said that stance could always be reversed.
Finally, just today, China said there would be no one-on-one meeting of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Xinping on the sidelines of the G20 Summit, to which India replied that none had been planned in the first place.