M A I N   N E W S

In touch with China on Ladakh incursion: India
Ashok Tuteja & Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 20
India today sought to play down the recent incident of intrusion by Chinese troops at the Daulat Beg Oldi sector in eastern Ladakh, expressing confidence that the matter would be resolved peacefully between the two countries.

Government sources pointed out that the two countries have for long had differing perception of the Line of Actual Control (LAC). Therefore, such incidents did occur and were resolved peacefully on the basis of bilateral agreements which existed and mechanisms provided for in these accords.

Sources said the two sides were in touch on the matter availing the working mechanism for consultation and coordination on India-China

border affairs, headed by the Joint Secretary (East Asia) in the External Affairs Ministry and the Director General of Border Affairs in the Chinese Foreign Ministry.

The border mechanism, former early last year, has held two meetings so far at which the two countries have sought to narrow down their differences over the LAC. At its meetings, the two countries have also exchanged ideas on they could deal with any incident of intrusion without triggering tension and how peace and tranquillity could be ensured along the LAC. “The latest flare up is clearly more than the usual patrol party coming into the disputed area to show its presence. However, the existing mechanism is sufficient to resolve it,” top military sources told the Tribune. One of the ways is raising the matter at the next border personnel meeting (BPM) between Indian and Chinese commanders that is slated to be held in late May or Early June.

Maintaining peace along the borders, and unmarked sections of the border, called the LAC, is covered under an existing agreement of 1993. If patrol parties of either side come face-to-face, they have to follow a drill mandated under an agreement signed in 2005 which asks soldiers to withdraw without firing or accosting each other.

The Chinese move along the LAC is on sharp contrast to the joint statement issued on September 4, 2012 following a meeting between Defence Minister AK Antony and his Chinese counterpart General Liang Guanglie.





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