Border row: Bhutan rejects Beijing’s claim that Doklam belongs to China

Doklam Standoff

Latest news : The Government of Bhutan on Thursday pointedly refuted a Chinese foreign ministry claim that Bhutan had conveyed through diplomatic channels to China that the trilateral border stand-off area in Doklam in the Sikkim sector is not its territory.

Official sources in the Bhutanese Government told ANI over phone, “Our position on the border issue of Doklam is very clear. Please refer to our statement which has been published on the web site of Bhutan’s foreign ministry on June 29, 2017.”

The Bhutanese sources were responding to a stunning, but unsubstantiated claim made by China’s top diplomat, Wang Wenli, that Bhutan had conveyed to Beijing through the diplomatic channels that the area of the standoff was not its territory.

Wang, who is the Deputy Director General of the Department of Boundary and Ocean Affairs in China’s foreign ministry, reportedly conveyed this information to a visiting Indian media delegation on Wednesday.

She, however, did not provide any evidence of her claim, which official sources in Bhutan said is at complete variance with Thimphu’s stated position and actions.

While acknowledging that Bhutan had protested to the Chinese government about Beijing violating a bilateral pact by allowing its troops to construct a road in the Doklam area on 16 June, Wang was quoted, as saying, “After the incident, the Bhutanese made it very clear to us that the place where the trespassing happened is not Bhutan’s territory.”

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