The two countries have fought only one war, in 1962, when India suffered a humiliating defeat. But simmering tensions involve the risk of escalation – and that can be devastating given both sides are established nuclear powers. There would also be economic fallout as China is one of India’s biggest trading partners.
he shared 2,100 mile (3,379 kilometer) border has long been the source of friction between India and China. The two countries do not agree on its precise location and both regularly accuse the other of overstepping it, or seeking to expand their territory.