theTripurapost News Images

China Expanding Hundreds of Villages Along Highly Disputed India Border: US

China is building dual-use villages near its border with India and expanding a network of military facilities. 

"In the desolate and inaccessible Himalayas, China is building and expanding hundreds of villages along its highly disputed border with India," a new report by Washington think tank Center for International and Strategic Studies (CSIS) said on May 16. 

Satellite images from geospatial data provider Sentinel Hub show the expansion between 2022 and 2024, Newsweek reported.

The CSIS report has revealed the expansion of military and dual-use village infrastructure at four different locations near Arunachal Pradesh. 

It revealed military facilities at Zhuangnan, Majidunkun and Cuiqiongmen besides Yarao. Arunachal is an integral territory of India. China claims it as its territory. 

Experts say that China builds villages on the border as part of a grey-zone strategy. It is considered to be between war and peace. 

Some experts have warned that the settlements could secretly deploy aggressive troops.

The Center for International and Strategic Studies said that between 2018 and 2022, China has built 624 'Jiaokang' villages and the work is continuing. Tensions remain high after clashes between soldiers on the border with India. 

In December 2020, there was a fight between the soldiers of China and India. In 1962, a war was fought between the two countries over the border. 

The last three years have also seen increasing clashes. Experts say that there is no clear solution to the border dispute. 

The risk of miscalculation remains high due to increasing militarization.

The rapid development near the border is a testament to China's ability to build infrastructure. A new road and two helipads were also built near Yarao last year. 

The report said that even at Yarao, which is at an altitude of 3,900 meters and has harsh weather, China has managed to build new buildings by December 2022. 

Experts say that China is also changing the demography in the border areas with a mix of Tibetan and Han populations.