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India-China border talks: Four things you should know | India News

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Indian and Chinese officials are holding talks to try to resolve a months-long standoff along their disputed frontier, where the two countries have deployed tens of thousands of soldiers.

More than a dozen rounds of talks so far have failed to break the border stalemate.

Experts say India’s stripping part of the disputed Kashmir region – which lies between India, Pakistan and China – of its autonomy a year ago exacerbated existing tensions with China and culminated in the deadliest clash between the Asian giants in more 45 years.

China saw this as a unilateral move that threatened its territorial sovereignty and condemned it at the United Nations.

The ongoing standoff in the Karakoram mountains is over disputed portions of a pristine landscape that boasts the world’s highest landing strip, a glacier that feeds one of the largest irrigation systems in the world, and a critical link to China’s massive “Belt and Road” infrastructure project.

Some key background on the issue:

Where is Kashmir and who controls it?

The Himalayan territory of Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan. Its eastern edge, the cold, high-altitude desert region of Ladakh, borders China on one side and Pakistan on the other and is home to the world’s only three-way, nuclear-armed junction.

Experts and some Chinese commentators have said New Delhi’s unilateral changes in Kashmir spawned the border tensions between the Asian giants [File: Danish Ismail/Reuters]

Pakistan and India have rival claims to Kashmir that date to the British Raj’s Partition in 1947, and have gone to war twice over them. Each country administers a portion of the region.

Many ethnic Kashmiri Muslims on the Indian side support an armed movement that demands the territory be united either under Pakistani rule or as an independent country.

In August 2019, New Delhi stripped Indian-administered Kashmir of its statehood, demoting it to a federal territory, and clamped down on dissent.

The region’s decades-old semi-autonomy, which protected jobs and land from outsiders, was also scrapped.

New Delhi also carved out Ladakh as a separate federal territory.

How does China view Kashmir?

China and India went to war over their disputed border issues in a 1962 conflict that spilled into Ladakh and ended with an uneasy truce.

Since then, troops from opposing sides have guarded the undefined, mountainous 3,500km-long (2,200-mile) border area, occasionally brawling.

india china media

At least 20 Indian soldiers were killed on June 15 during a scuffle with Chinese soldiers in Galwan Valley [File: Reuters]

They agreed not to attack each other with firearms. But on June 15, soldiers from the two sides fought with clubs, stones and fists, leading to 20 Indian soldiers succumbing to their injuries in the freezing temperatures. It was the deadliest fighting between the sides in 45 years.

Experts and some Chinese commentators have said New Delhi’s unilateral changes in Kashmir spawned the border tensions between the Asian giants.

The change “forced China into the Kashmir dispute,” Wang Shida, a South Asia expert at the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, a Beijing-based think-tank, wrote in a recent report.

The Chinese foreign ministry expressed its opinion clearly the day after the status change: “India has continued to undermine China’s territorial sovereignty by unilaterally changing its domestic law … Such practice is unacceptable and will not come into force.”

China later joined Pakistan in condemning India’s move at the UN Security Council.

Perhaps more vitally for Beijing, parts of Kashmir fall within its “Belt and Road” initiative, a massive, cross-continental infrastructure development project aimed at expanding China’s commercial connections globally.

China’s expansive road network crosses through Aksai Chin, a region it has held since 1950 and claimed by India as part of Ladakh.

It connects the restive, Chinese-controlled provinces of Tibet and Xinjiang before snaking north of Indian-administered Kashmir and cutting down through the Pakistani-administered portion of the region towards Pakistan’s Gwadar port in the Arabian Sea.

“China perceived the constitutional changes in Jammu and Kashmir as a threat” to Chinese interests in the region, specifically infrastructure projects linking China with Pakistan through Kashmiri territories controlled by Pakistan, said Lt Gen Vinod Bhatia, India’s director-general for military operations from 2012 to 2014.

He said calls by India’s powerful home minister and other leaders of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party for the “liberation” of Aksai Chin further provoked China’s “aggressive behaviour”.

The US factor

A growing strategic alliance between India and the United States has ruffled feathers in Beijing, which sees the relationship as an attempt to block its rise to power.

India China

Indian soldiers walk at the foothills of a mountain range near Leh, the capital of Ladakh [File: Tauseef Mustafa/AFP]

Now, the India-China conflict threatens to exacerbate tensions between China and the US. The two have locked horns this year over a range of issues, from trade disputes and human rights to Hong Kong’s status and the initial response to the coronavirus pandemic.

While New Delhi unilaterally changing Kashmir’s constitutional status has been an “immediate provocation for China,” according to Pravin Sawhney, a defence analyst and China expert, its military posturing along the disputed border in Ladakh also reflects a “compelling narrative that India is siding with the US.”

Wang Lian, an India specialist at Peking University in Beijing, said China expects to see Modi leveraging the recent border clashes as a way to draw in more US support.

“He may use the current complicated China-US relations in attempt to gain a better position that will maximise India’s interests,” Lian said, adding that Modi might also “try to use its domestic and international situation to find a better position in border negotiations with China.”

How Kashmiris view the power struggle

Since the mid-June army clashes between China and India, residents of Ladakh’s towns, dotted with Buddhist temples and cafes for mountaineering tourists, have watched uneasily as Indian troops brought in fighter jets, artillery and construction materials. The activity has marked one of the most significant military buildups in decades.

“We’ve never seen anything like this. Not even in 1999 when Indian and Pakistani soldiers fought for months in neighbouring Kargil Heights,” said Tsering Angchuk, a wool trader.

Feelings are different in the Muslim-majority Kashmir Valley, where India-China tensions have energised anti-India sentiment.

In Kashmir’s main city of Srinagar, demonstrators on June 21 jeered at Indian soldiers, shouting: “China is coming!”

“We hope powerful China’s involvement helps us to end India’s occupation of Kashmir,” said dried fruit merchant Nazir Ahmed.

India jets China

An Indian fighter jet flies over Leh after the deadly border clashes between India and China [File: Tauseef Mustafa/AFP]



Source – www.aljazeera.com

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Year of the Overcomer-Prophet Elvis Mbonye

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The eagerly awaited first fellowship of controversial Prophet Elvis Mbonye left viewers shocked as he declined to issue his now famous prophecies citing a refusal to settle for the new normal. In an on online service watched by thousands, the Prophet said him prophesying would “ be a concession to gathering online, rather than physically” further stating that it is not the will of God that church should meet online!

The Covid-19 SOPs given by the government and Ministry of Health have heavily impacted gatherings and as a result, ministries with large congregations have resorted to online services. The prophet however insists that this is a ploy to diminish the influence of the Kingdom of God.

He however proceeded to give the Prophetic Word of the year , saying “This is the year of the Overcomers” amidst cheers from those present. He also stated that this would not be a “gloomy” year, probably meaning that this would be a good year. Given that many of his prophecies have actually come to pass, should we pay more attention to him? We eagerly await the prophecies this year.

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Kabuleta blasts Media over “COFIT” reporting in new rant.

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Presidential hopeful Joseph Kiiza Kabuleta has expressed dissatisfaction with the media over what he says was”alarmist reporting” over the Covid-19 pandemic which he calls “COFIT” a term we believe is a wordplay between covid and profit, a view held by many that claims that the disease was exaggerated to maximize funding and corruption. Kabuleta has come to be known for his straight shooting style and admirable command of facts and policy, even being touted as the “smartest candidate” in the race.here is the full statement:

MEDIA AND THE COFIT ENTERPRISE

By Joseph Kabuleta

“Don’t look at where you fell, but where you slipped”
AFRICAN PROVERB

We know where the media fell. They fell when they were caught in the crossfire between opposition politicians and trigger-happy security hitmen; when they were unfairly targeted as they went about their noble duty of covering this explosive elective season. Sadly, some journalists are nursing wounds; others weren’t so lucky.
But it’s important for us to understand where they slipped.

If someone is sitting by the roadside sipping on his brew and he sees a gang of people sprinting past him, as if for their lives, it’s understandable if he impulsively joins without asking questions. But if after nine months he is still sprinting, and has still not asked any questions, then there’s something terribly wrong with him.

When we first went into lockdown in March, it was probably the best course of action because we didn’t know the full extent of the Cofit threat. But in the first 90 days, it was clear to all and sundry that it was never going to rank among Uganda’s top health challenges. And that’s not my opinion.

The Daily Monitor on July 15th quoted Dr Baterana Byarugaba, the Mulago Hospital Executive Director, describing the Cofit strain in the country as a mild form of flu which does not require hospital admission since it can be treated at home or in lower health facilities.
“l told Ugandans right from the beginning that the type of coronavirus we expect in Uganda is the mild one. It can be treated at health centre II, III, IV or the district hospital,” the top Medic said.

I read the story with glorious delight supposing that finally common sense, (or should I say science sense) would inform our decisions as a nation. But it’s difficult to know where science stops and politics starts. It’s become clear over the months that Cofit is not just a virus that causes respiratory problems, it’s a lot more than that; it’s a weapon in the hands of politicians that gives them power beyond their wildest dreams. In America, for instance, Democrat Congressman Jim Clyburn said Cofit is a “tremendous opportunity to restructure things to fit our (leftist) vision” while actress and activist Jane Fonda said that Cofit was “God’s gift to the left.”

Our media could have taken the side of poor Ugandans by showing the immense suffering and death from preventable sicknesses that resulted from the harsh Cofit measures; they could have highlighted the plight of businesses permanently closed and workers rendered redundant and sent back to villages. They could have wondered why truck drivers were testing negative in Kenya and positive in Uganda, or wondered why Cofit deaths only started after Prophet Museveni showed us a macabre lineup of coffins in his address, or why every celebrity who dies since then is ruled as Cofit (no autopsy required)

They could have told us that according to Worldometer, Cofit has a 0.28% mortality rate (or a 99.72 survival rate) and that it doesn’t rank anywhere in the Top 10 of Uganda’s health challenges; they could have told us that a child dies of malaria every two minutes (and Uganda accounts for 3% of the world’s malaria fatalities), which means that more Ugandans die from mosquitoes in ten days than Cofit has (allegedly) killed in the nine months it’s been on our lips.

Ugandans (especially of my age) have lived through real pandemics. As a young man growing up in the early 90s, nobody had to remind me that AIDS was real. Goodness me, I knew it was! And I didn’t need police to force me to wear protection, I knew the consequences. The fact that we are constantly being reminded that ‘Cofit is real’ tells a story of its own.

The media could have asked why Uganda, with one of the lowest Cofit cases or deaths, still holds on to a 9:00pm curfew when Kenya moved to 11:00pm in September, as did South Africa and several countries. The media could have told us that Malawi, Burundi, Tanzania and, recently, Ghana all held successful elections with full blown campaigns in 2020, and we aren’t hearing people dropping dead from Cofit in any of those countries. May be they should have tried to find out if people are dropping dead in Tanzania which altogether ignored all Cofit measures and went on to acquire middle-income status while Ugandans were still in lockdown.

They could have told us about the asymptomatic Cofit patients who were filmed dancing the night away in hospital wards, or of people suffering from other diseases who dare not go to hospital because they fear to be given a fake Cofit label and held for two weeks against their will.

The media could have told us that Cofit deaths across the world have been grossly inflated. Minnesota lawmakers say Cofit deaths could have been inflated by 40% after examining death certificates (according to The Washington Examiner) while Fox News reported that in Colorado 45% of Cofit corpses “were also found to have bullet wounds”.

They could have told us that 22 European countries, all of which had tens of thousands of Cofit deaths, opened their schools in the fall, and there has not been any reported spikes in cases as a result. They could have told us that more people have been killed by security men enforcing Cofit measures than by the virus itself.

Well, they could have…but they didn’t. And that’s where they slipped.

Instead they chose to go down the path of alarmist reporting and in so doing became, inadvertently or otherwise, enablers of Uganda’s trillion-shilling Cofit enterprise. Like Squealer in George Orwell’s Animal Farm, the media used flowery language to drum up fear by keeping people’s eyes transfixed on swelling numbers while the thieves carried their loot and stashed it away, and loan money was distributed among family members or used in regime prolongation.

The recent joint television news bulletin, and the adverts that followed, were the peak of hysterical reporting. “Zuukuka Tusaanawo” (wake up, we are perishing) screamed an advert featuring top media personalities. What a load of……(fill in appropriate word).

Remember, all the tyranny we have witnessed in this season has been done in the name of Cofit, and such sensationalist reporting justifies it; it gives dictators like Museveni the perfect pseudo-moralistic cover to unleash their most despotic fantasies while actually pretending that it’s for the good of the people. Unfortunately, the terror has now spread to the very media people whose hyperbole enabled it in the first place. There is such a thing as the law of cause and consequence, after all.

Instead of the media walking out of pressers and threatening to boycott government functions, let them threaten to stop all Cofit reporting. Museveni himself would come running with chocolate in hand.

If the president extended curfew by just two hours, for instance, he will have put as many as 200,000 Ugandans back to work especially in the hotel, restaurant and entertainment industries; but he doesn’t care, and sadly neither do many middleclass Ugandans who suppose that it’s their moral obligation as responsible citizens of the Global Village to fret over Cofit just because their ‘fellow citizens’ in Europe and America are doing so. Of course they can afford to do that because their corporate jobs have, for the most part, insulated them from the devastation of the government-instituted Cofit measures. They can enjoy working at home, beer in hand, as they listen to CNN and BBC and still expect the full complement of their salaries at the month end, and that makes them feel every bit like ‘their brothers’ overseas.

Such aspirational conformists are more likely to be offended by my stance on Cofit because they haven’t traversed crook and creek of this country and seen the damage reigned on this fragile society; not by the virus, but by the measures supposedly instituted to mitigate it.

You see, perhaps the most enduring damage this regime has done to our society is creating a three-part hierarchy of class and needs. At the zenith are a handful of connected ‘1986 generation’ and their families who feel entitled to all power and wealth. Beneath is a small (and shrinking) middleclass, and at the bottom of the pyramid is a mass of peasants. Every society, to various degrees, is ordered in the same fashion, but what makes Uganda unique is that the megalomaniacs at the top don’t give a nickel about the plight of the middleclass and the middleclass in turn don’t care a bit about the quandary of the peasant. The charlatans at the top will impose punitive taxes on the middleclass, then dip into NSSF coffers at a whim to share out their savings, and no one can stop them.

And the middleclass Ugandan, armed with his medical insurance, and safe in the knowledge that his wife is unlikely to die in child birth (20 Ugandans do EVERY DAY), and his children are very unlikely to die of malaria (20 do EVERY DAY), or from malnutrition (thousands do every year), will go around trumpeting Cofit because it’s more relevant to his status than malnutrition or malaria.

I could just as easily go down that path. I could also close my eyes to mothers failing to get breast milk because they can only afford half a meal a day (black tea with a piece of cassava), and the malnourished babies that emerge as a result; I could close my eyes to the teenage girls that were given out in marriage because schools closed, or those given out to meet family needs; I could ignore the fact that our president is opening 5-star markets in cities which have 1-star referral hospitals; I could also choose to look the other way and enjoy my middleclass lifestyle, but as an aspiring leader, I cannot.

As a leader, my aspiration is to remove the privileged/entitled class, to expand the middleclass (and their income), and to shrink the peasantry; but mostly to blur the lines that separate each category.
It doesn’t bode well for our country if the average Corporate Ugandan knows more about racism in America than about extreme poverty in Teso or Busoga because that disqualifies him/her from the solution to those local problems.

And finally, I have come to the realization that the biggest pandemic afflicting our country is poverty and the virus that causes it is called M7-1986. Vaccination against it is January 14

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Muntu Blocked in Kamwenge

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Alliance for National Transformation presidential candidate Gen. Mugisha Muntu has been blocked from campaigning in Kamwenge according to a statement he released earlier today.Below is the full statement:

STATEMENT
Today in Kamwenge, as we have done since the start of the campaign season, we headed out to speak with the people. We had earlier in the week agreed on the venue with security agencies. No one had anticipated that it would rain as much as it did, making it impossible for us or the people to access.

After identifying an alternative place only 100m away from the original venue, negotiating with the owner and communicating the same to the public, we headed to the second venue only to be stopped by police.

Our policy has always been to do all we can to be reasonable, even in the face of unreasonable action on the part of the state. We engaged the police leadership in a civilized, respectable manner well knowing that they intended to not only frustrate us, but cause us to act in ways that would give them an excuse to cause chaos. This was on top of their intimidating the radio we had booked and duly paid to appear on.

While we are confident that we are on the right side of both the law and reason, we have chosen not to endanger the lives of our supporters or the general public by escalating the situation. We will do everything humanly possible to avoid a single life being lost or blood being shed on account of our campaign.

And yet this truth remains: the regime’s days are numbered.

ChangeYouCanTrust

CountryBeforeSelf

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