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Last November, India issued its own political map, and included Aksai Chin in Pakistan-administered Kashmir and certain territories bordering Nepal. This had sparked a furious reaction from Beijing, who at the time branded the move from India as a “challenge to China’s sovereignty”, while Pakistan raged it was “incorrect, legally untenable and void”. But now Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has issued an all-new political map of the country, which shows Pakistan claiming authority over settled areas of India.
The map includes Gujarat’s Junagarh and Sir Creek on the Indian side of Jammu and Kashmir as Pakistan’s own region.
Ladakh, the site of an ongoing battle between India and China which the former claimed as a separate territory last August, as well as China’s border, have been termed as “frontier undefined”.
The inclusion of Junagarh in the new political map from Pakistan is significant as the state had been part of the partition between the two countries in 1947.
This move will likely escalate tension between the neighbouring countries, with India and Pakistan at loggerheads over the past 12 months when the government of Narendra Modi revoked the temporary special status of Jammu and Kashmir.
In June, Nepal published its own political map, revealing the Indian territories of Kalapani, Limpiyadhura, and Lipulekh as being located within its boundaries.
This sparked a furious reaction from India, with the country’s External Affairs Ministry describing the decision to revise the map an “artificial enlargement of claims”.
In November, the government of Prime Minister Modi hit back and included the China-controlled territory of Aksai Chin – a move which the Chinese Foreign Ministry strongly objected.
Geng Shuang, a spokesman for the ministry, said at the time: “India unilaterally changes its domestic laws and administrative divisions challenging China’s sovereignty.
“This is unlawful and void.”
The history of the Aksai Chin stretches back nearly 60 years, when Pakistan conceded the territory to China in 1963.
This came after both countries signed a boundary agreement aimed at resolving the border conflict in the Pakistan-administered Kashmir and Xinjiang.
Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry had claimed the Indian map showing Kasmir as part of its country was incompatible with the standing of the territory with the UN.
A statement read: “We reiterate that no step by India can change the disputed status of Jammu and Kashmir recognised by the United Nations.
“Such measures by the government of India cannot prejudice the inalienable right to self-determination of the people of Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir”
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