Saturday, 04 December 2021

China approves new land border law

China approves new land border law

On Saturday, China passed a new law to strengthen land border protection amid the ongoing military tension along the disputed boundary with India, firming up the military-civilian role in defending the country’s borders.

The legislation formalizes combining the military defense of China’s land borders with improving economic and social development in the bordering place.

It strengthens the (PLA) People’s Liberation Army’s policy to work closely with civilians staying in bordering areas, for example, Tibetan villagers living along the border with India, Bhutan, and Nepal - to work as the first line of defense.

According to Chinese official media, long-standing border disputes should be resolved through negotiations, the new law adds.

China and India have been sealed in a border row for 17 months, a phase that witnessed the deadly battle in the Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh on June 15, 2020, when troops from both sides fought for many hours with clubs covered with barbed, rocks and iron rods.

Twenty Indian soldiers were killed in a conflict, the first death on LAC since 1975; four Chinese soldiers were also killed, and one was injured.

On Saturday, China’s parliament, the National People’s Congress (NPC), voted to adopt the new law on the exploitation and protection of the country’s land border areas, which will take effect on January 1, 2022”, the news agency Xinhua reported.

The law will now govern how China guards its 22,000-km (13,670-mile) land border with 14 countries, including Russia, nuclear-capable North Korea, and Mongolia. Besides India and Bhutan - two countries, Beijing has land border disputes.

The law, which has 62 articles, stipulates that the state “shall take measures to safeguard and boundaries and territorial integrity and guard against and action any act that undermines territorial land boundaries and sovereignty,”

The law specifies that the state shall take measures to strengthen border defense, social development, and defense economic as well as opening-up in border areas, improve public services and infrastructure in such places,

Support and encourage people’s life and work there, and promote coordination between border defense and economic, social development in border areas”.

China approves new land border law 1unsplash image

Read More: The locally-made map shows the Aksai chin area in India seizes by china

The law “specifies the relevant responsibilities” of the PLA, the armed militia, and local governments to support and coordinate border defense and management of areas at the border and build border infrastructure.

Article 7 says: “Under the leadership of the Central Military Commission, relevant military organs shall organise, guide and coordinate the defence and control of land borders, maintain social stability, handle emergencies and cooperate in border defence and other related work.”

The law laid out that the state has to nurture border towns and improve their overall “supporting capacity.”

China has already built hundreds of border villages - by some counts more than 600 - across the country’s borders in Tibet.

Article 43 of the law says: “The state supports the construction of border towns, improves the system of border towns, improves the functions of border towns and strengthens the construction of supporting capacity.”

On the issue of resolving border conflict, the law says: “The state shall, following the principle of mutual trust, equality, and friendly consultation, handle land border related-affairs with neighbouring countries through negotiations to properly resolve disputes and longstandinglongstanding border issues.”

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