India, China hold ninth round of LAC talks

SENIOR military commanders from India and China met on Sunday for the ninth round of talks to discuss a possible solution to the nearly nine-month border standoff in eastern Ladakh.

The meeting, which began around 10 am on the Chinese side of the Chushul-Moldo Border Personnel Meeting (BPM) point, continued until evening.

The latest effort came two-and-a-half months after the last round of discussions between the two sides on November 6, with around 50,000 troops deployed in the region, along with additional artillery, tanks, and air defence assets.

It followed a memo from India for talks while the two countries maintained regular contact through the hotline and other mechanisms to prevent any untoward incident that could complicate the situation. In the last few months, India returned two Chinese soldiers who had strayed across the Line of Actual Control in separate incidents.

On Sunday, the Indian delegation was led by Lt Gen P G K Menon, XIV Corps Commander, which is responsible for the LAC in eastern Ladakh, and included another senior military officer from Delhi. Naveen Srivastava, Additional Secretary (East Asia) in the Ministry of External Affairs, was also present.

This is the fourth time that Srivastava, who has been leading the Indian side in meetings of the Working Mechanism for Consultation & Coordination on India-China Border Affairs (WMCC), was part of the military discussions. The WMCC talks last took place on December 18.

The Chinese…

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