NSA-level talks led to solution on border standoff

Government sources said on May 5,both of them discussed the incursion and the path to resolve it.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: May 10, 2013 1:30:15 am

The recent India-China border row in eastern Ladakh was resolved after talks between National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon and his equivalent in the China,State Councilor Yang Jiechi.

Government sources said on May 5,both of them discussed the incursion and the path to resolve it.

This was followed by a unit-level flag meeting at the stand-off point in Depsang where the two sides decided to disengage and return to their respective positions behind the Line of Actual Control. Jiechi,who was earlier the Foreign Minister,is also the Special Representative of the Chinese side for border talks with India.

It is learnt that India never considered the temporary camp set up by China on April 14 as a military threat. However,the incident is being looked at as having a deeper political message. While in the past the Chinese policy has been to keep the border issue separate from the overall bilateral relationship,the current regime has given a higher priority to resolving the issue.

Sources said India took a serious note of the incursion due to its political significance,given that in his first meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in Durban earlier this year,Chinese President Xi Jinping had raised the need for a new framework to settle the border issue.

Subsequently,the Chinese side formally proposed a new border agreement with India by downsizing patrols and other ‘aggressive’ military activity. It also mooted a hotline at the DGMO level to discuss border issues. Sources said the proposal is being studied and the two sides need to sit down and discuss the matter in detail before a commitment in made. The government assessment is that such border stand-offs will happen in future due to the unresolved boundary issue.

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