Protests against Chinese expansionism were held outside the Chinese embassy in London on Sunday by both Indian and Chinese diaspora.
The two dozen or so protestors representing the Indian diaspora, led by ‘Overseas Friends of BJP’, joined a separate gathering of about 50 protestors, representing the Iranian diaspora, who had also convened outside the embassy to voice their disapproval at what both groups perceived as growing Chinese influence in the region.
The Indian diaspora held up placards reading ‘Tibet is not part of China’ and ‘China Back Off’ and together both groups chanted slogans, such as, ‘Down with China’ and ‘Exit China’, outside the embassy.
Santosh Patil, speaking on behalf of the Indian protestors, said: “If you look at recent years or recent days, China has always been aggressive towards its neighbours.
“They are not only trying to expand economically but trying to go into the landmass. They have occupied Tibet, they have occupied a part of Iran and now they are coming into Indian territory.”
A second protestor added: “China is not behaving and that is not the right way to deal with things in this democratic world. You cannot be a dictator and China is actually behaving like a dictator.”
The Iranian Monarchy Association, who organised the protest on behalf of the Iranian diaspora, voiced concern over the secrecy of a 25-year cooperation agreement, that was signed between China & Iran in 2016, known as the ‘Sino-Iranian Comprehensive Strategic Partnership’
Sunday’s protest comes less than a month after violent clashes between Indian and Chinese troops, which led to the death of 20 members of the Indian Army, in the disputed Himalayan territory of Ladakh.
India retaliated to the violent clashes by banning nearly 60 Chinese mobile apps including TikTok, WeChat and Helo.
The UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, confirmed in Parliament last month the UK was closely monitoring the situation and called the escalation a very serious and worrying situation.
Both India’s and China’s governments have looked to downplay tensions since the incident although both sides are reported to have reinforced military personnel across the region.
The protests on Sunday took place the morning after ‘Free Tibet, Free Hong Kong, Free Uyghurs’ was projected on the façade of the Chinese embassy building on Saturday evening, although both groups have denied any involvement.
The UK Chinese embassy has not addressed the protests via its social media accounts.