India’s foreign minister says relations will only develop when both countries withdraw their troops from the disputed Himalayan border.
India has told China that its bilateral relations will develop only when both countries withdraw their troops from a clash on their disputed border with the Himalayas, the Indian foreign minister said.
Subrahmanyam Jaishankar shared India’s position when he met with his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, on the guidelines for a regional conference in Dushanbe on Thursday.
“We discuss the disconnect in our border areas. He stressed that progress in this regard is essential for the restoration of peace and tranquility, which is the basis for the development of bilateral ties, ”Jaishankar posted on Twitter.
I met Chinese FM Wang Yi on the guidelines of the SCO Summit in Dushanbe.
We discuss the disconnect in our border areas. He stressed that progress in this regard is essential for the restoration of peace and tranquility, which is the basis for the development of bilateral ties. pic.twitter.com/wmO0sxeWwL
– Dr. S. Jaishankar (@DrSJaishankar) September 16, 2021
Thousands of Indian and Chinese soldiers have been locked in a clash in the western Himalayas since last year when animosity erupted over a decades-long border dispute.
In June last year, tensions resulted in close combat that led to deaths on both sides, the first between them in decades.
After several rounds of talks between his commanders, his forces have fallen back in some sections of the border, including Pangong Tso Lake, a disputed area near the site of last year’s clashes.
But the troops backed by the artillery remain entrenched in the vicinity of other sectors.
“China has always handled the issue of the China-India border properly and with a positive attitude,” Wang said.
“[Both sides should] work together to maintain peace and tranquility in border areas and prevent a repeat of border incidents. “
As two leading emerging economies, China and India should push bilateral relations back to a healthy and stable path, Wang was quoted as saying by a statement from China’s Foreign Ministry.
China and India went to war over their border in 1962 and have never resolved the dispute. Still, business ties have flourished in recent years.
Jaishankar said he also discussed recent global events with Wang. He did not elaborate.
While China’s close military ties with India’s archrival Pakistan have been a source of tension, Jaishankar said India-China relations should be viewed in bilateral terms.
“It is also essential that China does not view its relations with India through the lens of a third country,” he told Wang.
The two senior officials are in Dushanbe for a meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.
Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will speak at the meeting via video link later on Friday.