BEIJING - China said on Tuesday it was dissatisfied that India had allowed the Dalai Lama to visit a disputed border region also claimed by Beijing, while also directing its ire at the exiled Tibetan leader.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said India had ignored requests to halt the trip to Arunachal Pradesh by the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader. China claims 90,000 sq km (35,000 square miles) of the remote Himalayan region, that it sees as southern Tibet.
The Indian side disregarded the solemn position of China in allowing the Dalai Lama to visit the disputed area of the eastern section of the China-India border region, Qin told a regular news briefing.
China expresses strong dissatisfaction about that.
With ties between the two Asian giants strained by a flare-up over their shared boundary, Beijing has sought to keep its irritation over the visit -- which it asked Delhi several times to halt -- from inflaming broader diplomatic tensions.
Beijing last week targeted the Dalai Lama instead, saying he was trying to poison the neighbours' relationship. On Tuesday, Qin again accused him of trying to undermine China.
China firmly opposes the Dalai Lama's visit to the disputed area of the eastern section of the China-India border region. The visit by the Dalai Lama to this disputed area has exposed his anti-China nature and his attempt is doomed to failure, he said.
Thousands of Buddhist monks and supporters welcomed the Dalai Lama to the region, where he had passed through after fleeing Tibet to India in 1959 after an abortive uprising against Chinese rule.
Beijing calls the Dalai Lama a dangerous splittist encouraging Tibetan independence, a charge he denies.
He says he is merely seeking genuine autonomy for Tibet and describes the visit to Arunachal Pradesh as a non-political lecture tour. He told reporters in the region that he was unsurprised by China's reaction.
(Reporting by Emma Graham-Harrison; Editing by Chris Buckley and Ron Popeski)