PEKING — China protested to India on Friday over its decision to form a new state in the remote disputed territory of Arunachal Pradesh, and warned of serious repercussions.
A bill ratified Tuesday by India's Parliament made the territory on its northeast border with China into the country's 24th state, but granted the governor special powers over law and order because of its strategic position.
A Chinese Foreign Ministry statement, carried by the official New China News Agency, said the establishment of the state was "absolutely illegal."
"The so-called Arunachal Pradesh is basically an Indian-occupied area of the Chinese territory lying between the traditional customary line and the illegal McMahon line," the news agency reported the Chinese Foreign Ministry said in a reference to a 1913-14 demarcation.
"It is entirely futile for the Indian authorities to try to legalize its occupation of Chinese territory through domestic legislation, and the consequences arising therefrom will be serious."
China claims much of Arunachal Pradesh, a 32,000-square-mile territory with a population of 628,000 that borders China's Tibet region. Bilateral border talks have failed to resolve the dispute.
Far to the west, China also occupies 14,500 square miles of the Aksai Chin part of Ladakh region in Kashmir that it seized in the 1962 border war with India. Peking has said it is willing to give up its claim on Arunachal Pradesh if India accepts the Chinese annexation of Aksai Chin.