In a surprising rebuke to Pakistan’s territorial claims in Jammu and Kashmir, China’s official broadcaster China Global Television Network (CGTN) has depicted Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) as part of Indian territory, Times of India has reported. This development comes ahead of the joint Indo-Chinese military exercises from 10 December onward.
CGTN had used the unexpected map representation as part of its news coverage of the attack on the Chinese consulate in Karachi.
The broadcaster is known to use pre-set templates for maps during its coverage, and this sort of tinkering with the official Chinese templates could not have been done without directions from senior Chinese officials. The move could be part of China’s tactic of using official media as trial balloons before going ahead with domestic or international policy shifts.
However, print media in China did not follow CGTN’s lead in showing the new depiction of J&K. Official maps are generally taken very seriously by the Chinese government, and authorities routinely carry out checks on local media and bookshops to ensure they only use the ‘officially correct’ maps. China’s official maps have never before shown PoK as part of India.
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