Tribune News Service
New Delhi, September 30
India and China on Wednesday held an inter-ministerial meeting to review the current situation along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) while Chinese Ambassador to India Sun Weidong called on both sides to follow up the five-point consensus reached by the two foreign ministers in Moscow on September 10.
The 19th meeting of the Working Mechanism for Consultation & Coordination on India-China Border Affairs (WMCC) had “frank and detailed discussions” on the developments since its last meeting on August 20. The “frank and detailed discussions” would have touched upon the first-ever instance of shots being fired on the LAC for the first time in 45 years.
In line with the sentiments expressed by the Chinese Ambassador, the MEA said the working mechanism meeting also underlined the importance it attached to the meetings earlier this month between the two Defence Ministers followed by an agreement between the two Foreign Ministers to sincerely ensure disengagement at all the friction points along the LAC.
The meeting also decided to hold the seventh round of the meeting of Senior Commanders at an early date. Military commanders had last met on September 21 and for the first time, come up with a joint press release which had spoken of the need to implement steps to avoid misunderstandings and maintain stability on the ground.
China is committed to seeking a solution through dialogue and negotiation, and restoring peace and tranquillity in the border areas at an early date, said the Chinese envoy. “We need to remain rational and calm, and resist the talk of “confrontation” and “decoupling”, so that we will not lose our way due to any individual incident or issue,” he said during a virtual meeting to commemorate China’s 71st national day with state chapters of India-China Friendship Association.
In the Chinese Ambassador’s extensive address, there was no trace of the rancor expressed by the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) just a day back. On Tuesday, the Chinese MFA had refused to recognise the existence of Ladakh and insisted that India accept a vaguely defined 1959 claim line for the western sector of the India-China land border.
India had reacted sharply to the observations and said both sides have reached several agreements intended not to advance one side’s perception of the border but to decide it by unanimity. By forwarding a 1959 claim line China was doing just the opposite, the MEA had contended.