China not against exchange of Tawang in Arunachal for Aksai Chin?

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India-china-flagsA Chinese diplomat has told a Beijing publication that if India were to cede politically volatile and important Tawang tract of land in Arunachal Pradesh then China would make certain grants in Aksai Chin.

Diplomat Dai Bingguo, who had led the special representative dialogue with India, told the China International Publishing Group that this may make way for settling India and China boundary dispute once and for all.

The suggestion came in an interview given by the former Chinese diplomat and high-ranking Communist cadre to a Beijing-based publication. Dai Bingguo had headed the special representative dialogue with India for over a decade until his retirement in 2013.

Since Dai’s interview is also read by Communist leaders, one can assume that it has been approved by them. “China and India are standing in front of the gate towards a final settlement,” he said.”The gate is a solution based on mutually accepted adjustments, with the Indian side holding the key to the gate.”

“The major reason for the boundary dispute is that China’s requests have not been met,” said Dai. “If New Delhi takes care of China’s concerns on the border’s eastern section, the Chinese side will respond and address India’s concerns elsewhere.”

Though Tawang for the exchange of parts of Aksai Chin is far from simple. The Tawang monastery in the area has a special place in Tibetan Buddhism. It is also considered an important place by Buddhists in India.

Interestingly, China withdrew from Tawang after 1962 war with India. Control of Tawang will strengthen China’s hold over Tibetan Buddhism centres.