Chinese Foreign Minister Meets Doval, Jaishankar in Delhi

Date:

Visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi with India’s External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar in New Delhi.

Wang’s visit to Delhi is part of his South Asia tour, which took him to Kabul and Pakistan where he raked up the Jammu and Kashmir issue.

NEW DELHI — Just a day after his trip to Kabul, visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Friday met National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar here.

Wang first met Doval at the latter’s office in South Block, after which he and Jaishankar proceeded to hold delegation-level talks.

The Chinese Minister arrived in Delhi from Kabul around 8 p.m. on Thursday and according to sources, trade and the pending border dispute in Ladakh will feature in the talks.

This is the first visit by a high-level Chinese diplomat to India since the border dispute between the two nations erupted over two years ago.

So far, 15 rounds of military talks have taken place to resolve the issue.

Wang’s visit to Delhi is part of his South Asia tour, which took him to Kabul and Pakistan where he raked up the Jammu and Kashmir issue.

During the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation meeting in Islamabad, Wang had said: “On Kashmir, we have heard again today the calls of many of our Islamic friends. And China shares the same hope.”

India however, rejected the “uncalled reference” to Kashmir.

“Matters related to the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir are entirely the internal affairs of India. Other countries including China have no locus standi to comment. They should note that India refrains from public judgement of their internal issues,” Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said on Wednesday.

Border disengagement happening at slower pace

S. Jaishankar said that during his meeting with visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, he told the latter that the disengagement of troops at the LAC in Eastern Ladakh is a “work in progress”, but is happening at a “slower pace” than desired.

Addressing the media after the meeting, Jaishankar said: “My talks with Foreign Minister Wang Yi have just concluded. We met for about three hours and addressed a broad and substantive agenda in an open and candid manner. We discussed our bilateral relations that have been disturbed as a result of Chinese actions in April 2020.

“So long as there are very large deployments, the border situation is not normal. We still have ongoing friction areas and have made progress in resolving some friction areas, including Pangong Tso. Our discussion today was how to take this forward. There have been 15 rounds of talks.

“If you ask me if our relationship today is normal, then my answer is no, it is not normal. Our effort today is to sort out the issue in its entirety.”

China’s People’s Liberation Army made an aggressive move at the Line of Actual Control in Eastern Ladakh in April 2020 leading to the border dispute between India and China.

The dispute is yet to be resolved even after over two years.

Jaishankar further said that he told Wang the current situation is a “work in progress, obviously, at a slower pace than desirable”.

“This needs to be taken forward since completion of the disengagement at LAC is necessary.”

After Delhi, Wang will travel to Nepal from Friday through Sunday. — IANS

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