China tells India to 'not complicate' border issue after Karmapa visit - India Today

China today said that it hoped India would not take actions to further complicate the boundary dispute on the eastern section of the China-India border.

Ananth Krishnan  | Posted by Bijin Jose
Beijing, December 5, 2016

China has said it hoped India would not take actions to "complicate" the boundary dispute after the Tibetan spiritual leader, the 17th Karmapa, made his first visit to Arunachal Pradesh last week.
Beijing said on Monday it hoped India can "refrain from any action that might complicate the boundary question", responding to the Karmapa's visit to address a large gathering in the Mon region of the state, which China has territorial claims on.
The visit by the Karmapa, who is after the Dalai Lama perhaps the most important leader in Tibetan Buddhism as the head of the Karma Kagyu school, was significant as it was backed by the Indian government, signalling a greater role for the 31-year-old Tibetan leader. He was accompanied by Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju, who tweeted this was the first visit by a Karmapa since that of the 3rd Karmapa some 900 years ago.
While China often hits out the Dalai Lama as "a splittist", it generally refrains from criticising the Karmapa, who fled Tibet aged 14, in similar terms. Unlike the blanket ban on the Dalai Lama and his images, the Karmapa's photos are displayed in many Chinese monasteries and also widely shared by his numerous followers on Chinese social media.
On Monday as well, China refrained from criticising the Karmapa, but asked India to not "complicate" the boundary dispute. "China's position on the eastern section of the China India border is clear and consistent," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang told reporters.
"We hope India can abide by relevant consensus and refrain from any action that might complicate boundary question. We should ensure peace and stability of border areas and sound and steady development of bilateral relations serves the common interests of the two sides."
Asked if China had raised the matter with India, Lu said, "China and India have constant communication on this and India is also very clear about our solemn position when it comes to the boundary question."
The visit by the Karmapa appears to suggest a new approach from the Indian government towards the Tibetan spiritual leader. Some in the government have long questioned his links with China, starting with his unlikely escape from Tibet aged 14, to more recently, following the discovery of foreign currency, including from China, in a monastery linked with him.
The suspicions often angered his followers, who wanted the government to stop curtailing his travels in India and abroad as the head of one of Tibetan Buddhism's most important schools.


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