During his two-hour-long talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Moscow, Indian External Affairs Minister (EAM), S Jaishankar has conveyed India’s concern over recent incidents in eastern Ladakh and he also took up the issue of provocative behaviour of Chinese frontline troops at numerous incidents of friction.
According to government sources, “In the meeting, the Indian side highlighted its strong concern at the massing of Chinese troops with equipment along the Line of Actual Control (LAC). The presence of such a large concentration of troops was not in accordance with the 1993 and 1996 Agreements and created flashpoints along the LAC. The Chinese side has not provided a credible explanation for this deployment. The provocative behaviour of Chinese frontline troops at numerous incidents of friction along the LAC also showed disregard for bilateral agreements and protocols.”
Jaishankar underlined that since the resumption of Ambassadorial level relations in 1976 and holding of boundary talks since 1981, India-China relations have developed on a largely positive trajectory. While there have been incidents from time to time, peace and tranquillity have largely prevailed in the border areas. As a result, India-China cooperation also developed in a broad range of domains, giving the relationship a more substantive character.
EAM told the Chinese side, “While the Indian side recognised that a solution to the boundary question required time and effort, it was also clear that the maintenance of peace and tranquillity on the border areas was essential to the forward development of ties. The recent incidents in eastern Ladakh, however, inevitably impacted the development of the bilateral relationship. Therefore, an urgent resolution of the current situation was in the interest of both nations.”
According to government sources, “The Indian side clearly conveyed that it expected full adherence to all agreements on the management of border areas and would not countenance any attempt to change the status quo unilaterally. It was also emphasised that the Indian troops had scrupulously followed all agreements and protocols pertaining to the management of the border areas.” According to government sources, EAM Jaishankar emphasised, “The immediate task is to ensure a comprehensive disengagement of troops in all the friction areas. That is necessary to prevent any untoward incident in the future. The final disposition of the troop deployment to their permanent posts and the phasing of the process is to be worked out by the military commanders”.