Bhutan's 'Shangri-La' caught between two rival superpowers

With its scenic mountains and stunning Buddhist monasteries on hilltops, Bhutan is a traveller’s dream and described by some as the last Shangri-La – a mystical beautiful place where everything is perfection.

The country’s capital, Thimphu, is a refreshing delight to those who are tired of traffic and pollution in mega cities. The fresh air and the lush green mountains and snow peaks in the distance offer a visual treat.

Men, women and children calmly walk around in the country’s traditional attire. It is probably the only country in the world where there are no traffic signals – just traffic police officers giving hand signals.

But beneath the surface, this picture-postcard country has been experiencing an undercurrent of tension and nervousness since last year.

Sandwiched between two Asian giants – China in the north and India in the south – the Himalayan nation, with a population of about 800,000, was anxious when troops from the two military powers squared up to each other over their border dispute.

The flare-up was in a strategic plateau called Doklam – situated in the tri-junction between India, Bhutan and China.

The remote mountainous region of Doklam is disputed. Bhutan and China both claim the area. India supports Bhutan’s claim over it.

When China started…

Continue Reading This Article At BBC News

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