(TibetanReview.net, Mar13’22) – The 15th round of the Corps Commander-level talks between India and China held at Chushul on the Indian side of the disputed border with occupied Tibet on Mar 11 on their standoff in eastern Ladakh was unable to break the stalemate but talks were positive, reported the indianexpress.com Mar 13, citing a joint statement issued by two sides.
Of course, given China’s known intransigence on the issue, with Beijing bent on seeking a change in the status quo ante in its favour with the new territorial acquisitions, the Indian military and diplomatic establishment both had low expectations of a positive outcome from the talks, the Hindustantimes.com earlier noted Mar 11.
The joint statement was silent on whether an agreement was reached to disengage from Patrolling Point (PP) 15 in Hot Springs, said the indianexpress.com report.
Rather, it was cited as saying the “two sides carried forward their discussions from the previous round”, held on Jan 12, “for the resolution of relevant issues along the LAC (Line of Actual Control) in the Western Sector”. It has also said both sides “agreed to maintain dialogue via military and diplomatic channels to reach a mutually acceptable resolution at the earliest”.
The joint statement also said the two sides had a “detailed exchange of views in this regard, keeping with the guidance provided by the State Leaders to work for resolution of the remaining issues at the earliest”.
The two sides “reaffirmed that such a resolution would help restore peace along the LAC in the Western Sector and facilitate progress in bilateral relations,” the statement said. “The two sides also agreed to maintain the security and stability on the ground in the Western Sector in the interim.”
The report cited officials as saying that while there was no breakthrough on Mar 11, the talks had taken place in a cordial manner, and the issues were discussed at length.
The meeting, held at Moldo-Chushul border meeting point on the Indian side, continued the positive atmosphere since the 14th round of talk, as the two sides reached consensus on agreeing to maintain dialogue via military and diplomatic channels to reach a mutually acceptable resolution to the remaining issues at the earliest time, said both China’s official Xinhua news agency and the globaltimes.cn Mar 12.
The final decision about disengagement from PP15, however, might be taken at different levels, which possibly can lead to some movement on the ground later, the indianexpress.com report noted.