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  • Oct 23, 2014
  • Updated: 7:42pm
NewsChina
PASSPORT ROW

India stamps map on visas for Chinese

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 25 November, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 25 November, 2012, 3:58am
 

India is stamping its map on visas given to Chinese visitors, an Indian official said yesterday, after Beijing began issuing passports showing disputed territories - including two in India - as its own.

"We have started issuing visas with India's map as we know it," said a Foreign Ministry official who did not wish to be named.

India's tit-for-tat action comes after Beijing began issuing new passports showing Arunachal Pradesh and Aksai China - regions that New Delhi claims - as part of Chinese territory.

External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid says the map showing the two areas as part of China is unacceptable.

The response comes amid already strained ties between the two Asian giants. Beijing has also included disputed islands in the South China Sea in the map outline on the new passports, angering both the Philippines and Vietnam, as well as areas including two of Taiwan's most famous scenic spots.

Early last week, the Philippine foreign secretary wrote a protest note to the Chinese embassy, and the Vietnamese government said it had also lodged its objections with Beijing.

The Hindu newspaper said the Indian government had decided not to take up the issue formally with China.

"It feels it will be better to speak through actions … [rather] than words," the newspaper quoted an unidentified government official as saying.

Beijing has attempted to play down the diplomatic fallout from the recently introduced passports, with a Foreign Ministry spokeswoman saying the maps were "not made to target any specific country".

The disputed border between India and China has been the subject of 14 rounds of fruitless talks since 1962, when the two nations fought a brief, bloody war over the northeastern Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh.

China's build-up of military infrastructure along the frontier has become a major source of concern for India, which increasingly sees Beijing as a longer-term threat to its security than traditional rival Pakistan.

Additional Reporting by Associated Press

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This article is now closed to comments

yuuzan
Why even include a map in a passport? Clearly a provocative act on the part of Beijing. China should realize its error and correct its mistaken action for it has hurt the feelings of people across Asia.
fearonjones
The fact is of course that it is only the New Territories which UK was obliged to hand back, not Hong Kong, which was 'given' in perpetuity, so perhaps UK should do what India and China have done. Oh what fun!!
Shadow
Our Great Great China 中国加油
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