New Delhi– India and China have agreed on a five-point plan for resolving the prolonged border face-off in eastern Ladakh that included abiding by all existing agreements and protocol on management of the frontier, maintaining peace and tranquility and avoiding any action that could escalate matters.
The two countries agreed to the plan during talks between External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Moscow on Thursday evening on the sidelines of a Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meet.
The Indian Army and the Chinese People’s Liberation Army(PLA) have been locked in a tense standoff in multiple areas along the Line of Actual Control(LAC) in eastern Ladakh since early May.
The Ministry of External Affairs(MEA) issued a joint press statement early on Friday featuring five points which were agreed by both the sides at the “frank and constructive” discussions by the two ministers.
“The two foreign ministers agreed that the current situation in the border areas is not in the interest of either side. They agreed, therefore, that the border troops of both sides should continue their dialogue, quickly disengage, maintain proper distance and ease tensions,” it said.
The joint statement said Jaishankar and Wang agreed that both sides should take guidance from the series of consensus reached between leaders of the two countries on developing India-China relations, including not allowing differences to become disputes.
Jaishankar-Wang talks: Indian side conveys concern over China massing troops along LAC in Ladakh
India strongly raised the deployment of large number of troops and military equipment by China along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh and conveyed its concern during the talks between External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart Wang Xi in Moscow, government sources said on Friday.
The Indian delegation raised the issue of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army(PLA) massing troops in eastern Ladakh as the two foreign ministers reached a five-point agreement that will guide the two countries in resolving the border standoff in eastern Ladakh. The meeting in Moscow on Thursday evening lasted two-and-a-half hours.
Jaishankar and Wang were in the Russian capital to attend a meeting of foreign ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).
At the talks, the government sources said the Indian side conveyed to the Chinese delegation that the presence of a large concentration of the PLA troops was not in accordance with the bilateral pacts of 1993 and 1996 on border affairs.
China has deployed a large number of troops and weapons along the LAC in the last few weeks after the border standoff erupted in early May.
The Indian delegation also conveyed to the Chinese side that the provocative behavior of the PLA at friction points on the LAC showed its disregard for bilateral agreements and protocols.
“The Indian side clearly conveyed that it expected full adherence to all agreements on management of border areas and would not countenance any attempt to change the status quo unilaterally. It was also emphasized that the Indian troops had scrupulously followed all agreements and protocols pertaining to the management of the border areas,” said a source.
Jaishankar told Wang that maintenance of peace and tranquility on the border areas was essential to the forward development of ties, the government sources said.
The external affairs minister also conveyed to his Chinese counterpart that the recent incidents in eastern Ladakh inevitably impacted the development of the bilateral relationship.
Therefore, he told Wang that an urgent resolution of the current situation was in the interest of both thenations, the sources said.
The Indian side insisted that the immediate task should be to ensure a comprehensive disengagement of troops in all the friction areas and that it was necessary to prevent any untoward incident in the future, the sources added.
The sources said a final disposition of the deployment of troops to their permanent posts and the phasing out process is to be worked out by the military commanders of the two sides.__Kashmir Observer