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India/China Border Clash Apparently Leads to Indian Ban on Chinese Apps in Apple’s App Store

India/China Border Clash Apparently Leads to Indian Ban on Chinese Apps in Apple’s App Store

The longstanding border dispute between India and China has led to increased scrutiny of Chinese electronics shipments into India, and now India is banning 59 popular Chinese apps in the Apple App Store in India.

India banned 59 popular Chinese apps earlier this week, accusing the apps of threatening the “sovereignty and integrity” of the country. The Ministry of Information Technology, invoked its power under section 69A of the Information Technology Act to block 59 apps since “in view of the information available they are engaged in activities which is prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order.”

TechCrunch reports that both Apple and Google have blocked access to the apps in their respective app stores.

Two days after India blocked 59 apps developed by Chinese firms, Google and Apple have started to comply with New Delhi’s order and are preventing users in the world’s second largest internet market from accessing those apps […] Apps that India has blocked are no longer listed on Apple’s App Store and Google Play Store […]

Thursday’s move from Apple and Google, whose software power nearly every smartphone on the planet, is the latest escalation in an unprecedented tension in recent times between China and India. A skirmish between the two neighbouring nations at a disputed Himalayan border site last month left 20 Indian soldiers dead, stoking historical tensions.

The BBC reported on last month’s incident which seemingly led to the app bans.

At least 20 Indian soldiers were killed in a clash with Chinese forces in a disputed Himalayan border area, Indian officials say.

The incident follows rising tensions, and is the first deadly clash in the border area in at least 45 years. The Indian army initially said three of its soldiers had been killed, adding that both sides suffered casualties. But later on Tuesday, officials said a number of critically injured soldiers had died of their wounds.

India’s external affairs ministry accused China of breaking an agreement struck the previous week to respect the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Galwan Valley.

BBC diplomatic correspondent James Robbins says violence between two armies high up in the Himalayas is very serious, and pressure will grow on the two nuclear powers not to allow a slide into full-scale conflict.

The disputed border is known as the Line of Actual Control, a vague line on a map. Both sides have long been trying to guard against war, with soldiers urged not to shoot at each other.

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