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India, China talk CBMs; seek peace at borders




 India and China agreed today that pending the final resolution of the boundary issue, it is necessary to maintain peace and tranquillity in the border areas, and exchanged ideas on various confidence building measures (CBMs) in this regard as the two sides tried to put behind them the Doklam episode.

After a meeting between the Special Representatives (SRs) of India and China on the Boundary Question -- Ajit Doval, National Security Advisor of India and Yang Jiechi, State Councillor -- the external affairs ministry said the talks were "positive".

During today's border talks, the first since the 73-day- long military standoff in Doklam, the two sides underlined the need to build on their convergences while seeking mutually acceptable resolutions of their differences with due respect for each other's concerns, sensitivities and aspirations.

While the MEA statement did not say whether the Doklam issue was discussed, in Beijing, a spokesperson in Chinese foreign ministry skirted a question on whether it figured during the talks and instead said, "This mechanism is not only a high-level channel for dialogue on border issues between the two sides but also important platform for strategic communication between China and India."

The Doklam standoff began on June 16 after the Indian troops intervened and stopped the Chinese army from building a road in the area claimed by Bhutan as it posed a security risk to Chicken Neck, the narrow corridor connecting India with its north-eastern states. The two armies "disengaged" on August 28.

"The two sides agreed that pending the final resolution of the boundary question, it is necessary to maintain peace and tranquillity in the border areas. In this regard, the Special Representatives exchanged ideas on various confidence building measures," the MEA said in a statement.

It further said, "The talks were positive and focused on bringing out the full potential of the closer developmental partnership between the two countries."

Doval and Yang also called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and briefed him about their deliberations.

Modi asserted that a strong India-China relationship is important not only for the mutual benefit of their people, but also for the region and the world, according to the ministry.

The SRs undertook a comprehensive review of earlier rounds of the talks and agreed that an early settlement of the boundary question serves the fundamental interests of both countries.

They re-emphasised their commitment to achieve a fair, reasonable and mutually acceptable solution to the India-China boundary question at an early date.






Editorial

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