By Lobsang Tenchoe
DHARAMSALA, Dec 7: Mongolia has sought support from India as China imposed transportation blockade on Mongolian trucks entering China.
Provoked by His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s visit to Mongolia in November, China has hiked tariffs on Mongolian trucks passing through Gashuun Sukhait, a major border crossing between the two countries.
Ambassador-designate of Mongolia, Gonchig Ganbold called Beijing’s move an over reaction and sought help from India.
“India should come out with clear support against the difficulties that have been imposed on Mongolia by China, which is an overreaction to the religious visit by His Holiness Dalai Lama. We have not changed our ‘One China’ policy, so Beijing’s response to Mongolia hosting the spiritual leader is really not justifiable,” The Hindu quoted envoy Gonchig Ganbold as saying in its report.
According to a notice issued by local authorities and published by the Mongolian Mining Journal on Nov 30, the crossing in the Chinese region of Inner Mongolia would charge vehicles a transit fee of 10 Yuan ($1.45) each time they pass through the border, and would also impose an additional charge of 8 Yuan per ton for any goods they are delivering.
“With winter temperature already around minus-20 degrees, transport obstruction by China is likely to create a humanitarian crisis in Mongolia as these measures will hurt the flow of essential commodities,” he added.
China holds Mongolia of wrongdoing for hosting the Tibetan spiritual leader and started imposing erratic charges for over-land transit.
“The erroneous action taken by the Mongolian side on Dalai’s visit hurt the political foundation of China-Mongolia relations and exerted negative impact on the development of bilateral relations,” China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang has said in earlier reports.