External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar told his Chinese counterpart on Wednesday that the prolonging of the existing situation in Eastern Ladakh is impacting the relationship between the two countries.
Jaishankar met the State Councilor and Foreign Minister of China, Wang Yi, on the sidelines of the SCO Foreign Ministers’ meet in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.
Recalling their last meeting in Moscow in September 2020, the External Affairs Minister emphasized the need to follow through on the agreement reached then and complete the disengagement process, resolving the remaining issues along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Ladakh at the earliest.
“The External Affairs Minister pointed out to the State Councilor that the successful disengagement in the Pangong Lake area earlier this year had created conditions for resolving the remaining issues. It was expected that the Chinese side would work with us towards this objective. The EAM, however, noted that the situation in the remaining areas is still unresolved,” said a statement issued by the Ministry of External Affairs.
Jaishankar recalled that both sides had agreed that a prolongation of the existing situation is not in the interest of either side. It is visibly impacting the relationship in a negative manner, he added.
India emphasized that maintenance of peace and tranquility in the border areas has been the foundation for the development of ties since 1988. The attempts to change the status quo last year that also disregarded commitments under the 1993 and 1996 agreements have inevitably affected ties, Jaishankar said.
“He emphasized that it was, therefore, in mutual interest that the two sides work towards early resolution of the remaining issues along the LAC in Eastern Ladakh, while fully abiding by bilateral agreements and protocols,” the statement added.
The two ministers noted the agreement between both sides in the last meeting of the WMCC on June 25, 2021 to hold another round of meeting of senior military commanders. They agreed that this should be convened at the earliest.
The MEA said they also agreed that in this meeting, the two sides should discuss all the remaining issues and seek a mutually acceptable solution. There was also an understanding that both sides will continue to ensure stability on the ground and neither side will take any unilateral action that could increase tension.
The two ministers had a detailed exchange of views on the current situation along the LAC in Eastern Ladakh and also on the other issues related to the overall India-China relations.
(With IANS inputs)