The next round of Special Representatives talks between India and China over the boundary issue will be held in due course, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said today. National Security Advisor Ajit Doval will hold talks with his Chinese counterpart, Yang Jiechi, who are currently the designated Special Representatives. Both sides have so far held 19 rounds of talks.
“Both the Chinese and Indian leaders attach great importance to the boundary issue and we have made efforts for many years to resolve this issue,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told a media briefing. “In the previous meeting the Special Representatives had exchanged views and made positive progress. Now this mechanism is operating very well. Two sides will decide the date and time for this year’s meeting in due course,” she said.
The next round of Special Representatives talks would be the first dialogue between China and India over the boundary issue since the resolution of the 73-day Dokalam standoff in August. Officials say the two sides achieved steady progress in managing the differences over the border through the border dialogue mechanism though differences remained over the 3,488 km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC).
Hua hinted that the next round of the Russia, India and China (RIC) Foreign Ministers meeting will also be held soon. “We highly value this mechanism. According to my information the three parties are in communication to this specific issue. We support India in holding this meeting,” she said. Earlier Chinese officials told PTI that the RIC meeting will be held in New Delhi in December and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi will attend it.
Asked if Yang, who has now been elected to the powerful 25-member Politburo of the ruling Communist Party of China at its recent once-in-a-five-year Congress, will continue to be China’s Special Representative, Hua said “I have not heard about any changes in the Special Representative on the Chinese side.” To a question whether there would a meeting between Indian and Chinese Prime Ministers at the East Asia Summit, to be held in the Philippines, she said, “so far I have no specific information to offer.”
“Various parties can keep communication, if they would like to meet,” she said.