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Will not tolerate any attempt to change status quo at LAC, India tells China

Our Bureau. New Delhi | Updated on September 11, 2020 Published on September 11, 2020

(From left) External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi, on the sidelines of a meeting of Foreign Ministers of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation in Moscow on Thursday   -  AP

Both sides reach five-point agreement to address conflict, but continue to trade charges

India has expressed its “strong concern’’ at the massing of Chinese troops with equipment along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh and said it would not tolerate any attempt to change the status quo unilaterally as the two sides reached a five-point agreement on addressing the current situation at the crucial meeting between External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Moscow on Thursday, sources said.

Despite the two Ministers agreeing to avoid actions that escalate tension and not allow disagreements to become disputes, both countries continued to trade charges blaming each other for the border conflict.

“The Indian side told China that the presence of such large concentration of troops was not in accordance with the 1993 and 1996 Agreements and created flash points along the LAC. The Chinese side has not provided a credible explanation for this deployment. The provocative behaviour of Chinese frontline troops at numerous incidents of friction along the LAC also showed disregard for bilateral agreements and protocols,” a source aware of the details of the meeting told BusinessLine. .

Per a statement made reportedly by China, Wang had told Jaishankar that the imperative is to immediately stop provocations such as firing and other dangerous actions that violate the commitments made by the two sides and also urged India to move back frontier troops for the situation to de-escalate.

The Foreign Ministers’ met at the sidelines of the on-going Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meeting in Moscow and talked for about two and a half hours.

Five-point pact

According to the five-point agreement reached, both sides shall abide by all the existing agreements and protocol on China-India boundary affairs, maintain peace and tranquillity in the border areas and avoid any action that could escalate matters.

The two sides also agreed to continue to have dialogue and communication through the Special Representative mechanism on the India-China boundary question. They also agreed in this context that the Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on India-China border affairs (WMCC), should continue its meetings.

As the situation eases, the two sides resolved to expedite work to conclude new confidence-building measures to maintain and enhance peace and tranquillity in the border areas.

The on-going border skirmish between India and China started on June 15 when a violent face-off between Chinese and Indian troops resulted in the killing of soldiers on both sides. The talks that were on to de-escalate the tension suffered a setback in August-end when both sides accused each other of trespassing LAC.

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Published on September 11, 2020
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